Letter Inspires Teammates

Gustavo Damian Danemann Soto, Staff Writer

 “I remember the first time I saw her play. I was wowed,” said Senior Jasmin Nguyen.

   Anyone who’s seen Senior Cissy Letter play tennis knows she’s a force to be reckoned with on the court. As the captain of the Varsity Tennis Team, co-president of three clubs, and a dedicated student, one can only imagine the pressure she must be under. However, these thoughts fizzle upon talking to her. Letter’s calm, humble, down-to-earth, and kind demeanor is admirable, especially considering how rare it is to find this in an athlete of her caliber.

   Letter’s tennis career began at the age of nine. Her family’s appreciation of the sport got her interested in it. “I like the individual aspect of it. It can be a team sport, but a lot is left up to you,” Letter said.

   Letter has a wide variety of tennis strengths. Freshman Natasha Asgari explained, “Her slices are good; her serves are great. Every single time I see her play I get surprised.” Letter also believes that serving is her best quality.

   Junior Bella Rose Schremmer believes Letter “…naturally assumed her position” as captain of the team, and praises her way of handling it. “She definitely knows a good balance between being productive, running drills, and having fun and bonding with the team,” she added.

   Coach Justin Nguyen also applauded her leadership: “She doesn’t yell, but she doesn’t have to.” 

   Justin Nguyen especially appreciates the modesty she’s shown. “Even though she’s our captain, even though she’s one of the best players on the team, when I tell her things or give her criticism, she is always very open to it. I think it’s really amazing how humble she is,” he shared.

   Jasmin Nguyen said, “She wants to improve. Every time she makes a mistake, she wants to fix it.” Sophomore Madeleine Ko mentioned her dedication as the cause, while Asgari thinks it’s a product of Letter’s hard work and confidence in her play. Asgari stated, “I see her as really influential, inspiring, and a great athlete all together.”

   Those around Letter have noticed quite a lot of improvement in her game in just these past few weeks. “This season in particular, I’ve seen her make such great strides,” said Justin Nguyen. “Within the last month or so, she has improved so much more than she had in the last year.” Asgari agreed, “I feel like she’s getting better every single day. She was already incredible but now she’s even better.”

   One thing everyone emphasized was Letter’s kind and friendly personality. “You can always talk to her. It’s really easy,” said Jasmin Nguyen. Schremmer said, “…as a friend, she’s very reliable, and she’s always there to help out.”

   In regards to her future, Letter said, “I’m looking forward to the League tournament at the end of the season to get a chance to play in CIF.” However, she isn’t planning to play in college.

   Regardless of what Letter’s tennis future holds, she’s made quite an impact on the UC tennis community. As mentioned by Ko, “It’s inspiring to see her, and I want to be as good as she is.” Her compassion as a team leader and the dedication she has for the sport make her the clear female athlete of the month.