Young and on the Rise

Eastview 7th grader makes state tournament

Anna Plotnik, Reporter

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The school bell rang at 3:00pm, giving the signal for kids to go home and relax, all except for one 7th grader, Gavin Young. “Here let me put him on speaker phone so he can eat and talk at the same time before practice,” his mom said to me on their 20-minute car ride to Baseline Tennis Center at the University of Minnesota. At that moment, I could tell Gavin was a very busy, hard working young man. Although he likes to play golf with his Dad and Grandpa, as well as hang out with friends, you can usually find him on a tennis court.

“I have played tennis since I was 3, but at age 9 was when I stopped goofing around and began to play more competitively,” he said, when asked how long he has played the racquet sport.  Practicing an impressive hour and a half, 6-7 days a week, all of Gavin’s hard work has payed off, earning him  a spot on Eastview’s very own Varsity Tennis team and a chance at a state high school title. One of his favorite quotes comes from a very famous tennis player, Raphael Nadal, “Losing is not my enemy, fear of losing is my enemy.” With this quote in his mind, Gavin has pushed forward and has not let the fear of losing get in his way.

Since Eastview opened in 1997, only four students on the Varsity tennis team have ever made it to state. Of the four, one of them is Gavin and another is his uncle, who was state runner-up in 2007.  In the 2016 tournament, Gavin is the only 7th grader in the tournament. He will start off playing against the number one seed in the state, senior Jackson Allen, who will go to play at the University of Minnesota next year.

“There is a lot of good players in this tournament,” Gavin says. ” I have a strong chance of losing, and I know that, but I want to give him (Jackson) a good fight.”

With the first round of the tournament just around the corner, tennis practices are a necessity. “Hey, I gotta go,” he says to me  on the phone before grabbing his tennis gear; getting ready for yet another practice.  The everyday practices, dedication, and hard work have allowed him to compete in various national tennis tournaments, and a chance at representing Eastview High School in state. Although he is only in his early teen years, he is already made his mark at Eastview High School, and is now a part of the Eastview family.