Girls tennis

Chesterton's Modesto becoming an area tennis force

2013-05-07T17:15:00Z 2013-09-16T19:36:18Z Chesterton's Modesto becoming an area tennis forceJim Hunsley jim.hunsley@nwi.com, (219) 548-4356 nwitimes.com

Chesterton No. 1 singles player Meg Modesto gave track a whirl when she was in seventh grade.

"Tennis just got in the way," she said, "so I just stuck with one sport."

The sophomore has been playing tennis for at least 10 years, and she's quickly become a dominant prep singles player in the area.

She's 8-1 this season at No. 1 singles and has lost only 26 games this year. For her prep career, she's 23-2 in singles matches and has 10 6-0, 6-0 wins, including four this season.

"I've practiced the most I ever had to get ready for this year," said Modesto, who replaced older sister and IUPUI freshman Bobbi at No. 1 singles for the Trojans.

"I've been surprised in a couple of matches that I expected to be closer. That just kind of blows my mind. I guess it feels pretty cool. ... It feels like the work has paid off."

Modesto said she practices more than three hours a day -- an hour before school, practice or matches, then normally an hour afterward.

"It's a personal preference for me," Modesto said. "I always want to be prepared."

Modesto hasn't played a single three-set prep match, but she's seen her fair share of those three-setters in USTA play. She said she's played at two Level 2 tournaments, which is just a step away from the nationals.

"Given all of the experience I've had," she said, "I know how to play the game and deal with close matches."

Chesterton coach Gretchen Shinn sees Modesto making minor tweaks to her game.

"I think she's pretty much the same. She was at a high level last year," Shinn said. "I know it's a process, but she knows what she is doing."

Modesto does get pushed in practice, working with senior and No. 2 singles player Margaret Shinn, the coach's daughter.

"They've encouraged one another," coach Shinn said. "They push each other, and it's a fit for both of them, no doubt."

Modesto is also nudged by her family's tennis tradition. Older sisters Bobbi and Maureen reached the college level, somewhere Meg wants to be in a few years.

"I know where I've come from, and that makes me feel ready," she said. "I have goals, and playing in college is definitely one of them. ... I know I have to work even harder."

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