Going above and beyond

Ella Doughty, a freshman on varsity, shows her commitment to the team in many ways.


Courtesy of Ella Doughty

Ella Doughty standing in her uniform, holding her tennis racket, smiling brightly for a picture.

By Emma Christenson

The tennis ball hits the court chronologically, bouncing off the racket back and forth. Her breath is heavy, focusing on what move to make next. Her hair, in a high ponytail, wearing a red Adidas tank top and bright white skirt. Her plays move in a strategic fashion; so smoothly that no one can see them coming. She hits the ball into her teammate’s side of the court and gets the final point she needs to win her practice match. Her name is Ella Doughty. 

Doughty is a freshman on the varsity girls tennis team, and she has been playing tennis since she was a little girl. Her brother was the first person to introduce the idea to her in the first place. 

“I started when I was really young. I think first my brother wanted to do it [tennis] and I [said], “Oh, I’ll do it too.” And then my parents just signed me up for lessons” Doughty said. 

Even though Doughty started out small, she is an amazing and hardworking player. Juggling schoolwork and tennis was not an easy task but in the end, she has become a fantastic addition to the Huntley varsity team. 

“I have to manage my time really well because during [the] season we’ll have a practice right after school for two hours and I’d have to shower, get dinner and then have time to do homework still,” Doughty said. 

Barry Wells, the girls varsity tennis coach, has seen that Doughty is very committed to the team in a lot of ways. Wells has seen Doughty does not get very emotional when playing matches, she keeps her cool and thinks about her next move. 

“She’s an excellent player. She’s only a freshman and she’s already one of the best players we’ve ever had in our program,” Wells said. “She’s a very hard worker in practice. She’s very focused. She gets along with all the other girls so I would say she is a good communicator. She doesn’t get super emotional. But I think that’s kind of a good thing.” 

One of Doughty’s teammates and friends, Elaina Hibbeler, has described Doughty as a powerhouse that even when worn out can still push through during matches. Doughty has shown her teammates that she is a very resilient player through her matches.

“One match, It was at Dundee crown she was playing her opponent and it was the longest match ever. It went to a third set. I don’t know how she could keep going through this. I’d be so tired but she just kept going,” Hibbeler said. ” She didn’t give up, she ended up winning the game and it was awesome.”