By By Dan Fappiano • 03/06/2021 12:45 PM EST
Megan Kell grew up playing field hockey in North Haven, but when she was in 8th grade Megan decided she wanted to test her mettle on the tennis court. Megan took a liking to tennis straight away and went on to have a successful career as a member of the North Haven women’s tennis team, as a senior captain and No. 1 doubles player this spring.
“I wanted to play a second sport. This is the one that interested me the most. I decided to give it a try, ”Megan says. “I definitely started loving him as soon as I started. When I got into the first year of high school, I realized I really wanted to stay.
Megan started taking tennis lessons in town in grade 8, then signed up to play high school in her freshman year. Megan mainly spent her first season as a JV player, participating in a few college games as a substitute. Megan enjoyed the environment of the tennis team and felt a similar vibe to her experience with the field hockey team, which made for a fairly smooth transition.
“It wasn’t a huge transition, but I wasn’t in a structured team before. But since I had played a season in a field hockey sport in high school, it was very similar. They were different sports, but the structure was the same, ”Megan says. “It was definitely more fun to play as a team. There were more girls, more competition and more people to play with every day.
Megan held the same role on the sophomore tennis team and then saw her junior season canceled due to COVID-19. While she was unable to compete last spring, Megan continued to work on her game and did everything to come back stronger as a senior. Megan has spent time at the North Haven Health & Racquet Club, working on various planes and the mechanics of the sport.
Upon her return as a senior, Megan made the jump to become a full-time varsity player at No.1 in doubles with her senior co-captain Nadia Kavgaci. Megan had mostly played singles during her first two seasons with the team. However, Megan found that she enjoyed playing doubles and embraced the dynamic of her and Kavgaci being able to motivate themselves on the pitch.
“I appreciate it. Singles is all about you. There’s no one else there,” Megan says. “It’s definitely nice to have a duplicate partner. If you make a mistake, there’s a chance they can help you and recover. ”That makes it easier in a way.
In addition to being doubles partners, Megan and Kavgaci are also teaming up to lead North Haven as senior captains this season. As captain, Megan makes sure to lend a helping hand to North Haven freshmen in any way she can, just like the seniors did to her when she first joined the team. .
“It was awesome,” Megan says of the captain. “Going into freshman year and now being able to help new freshmen coming in as senior is a really good role to play.”
Head Coach Bob Migliorini is very pleased with the way Megan has guided North Haven on and off the field this year. Migliorini says Megan’s leadership and overall game has proven to be crucial to the club’s success.
“During this season, Megan has brought exceptional leadership and teamwork to the team as co-captain,” said Migliorini. “She also strengthened our roster by being in the doubles position and had a great season in that role.”
Megan continued to play field hockey for North Haven throughout high school. Like tennis, Megan started with field hockey when she was in college. Megan has adapted to North Haven’s forward position and believes playing both sports has allowed her to focus on similar skills and improve her overall attacking abilities.
“As a forward my job is mainly to shoot. If you look the wrong way, you’ll miss it. It’s the same in tennis, ”Megan says. “There are definitely things, like hand-eye coordination, that you can learn from both. “
After graduating from North Haven, Megan will attend the University of South Carolina, where she will earn a degree in Exercise Science. Megan plans to play intramural tennis at school.
Only a few years ago, Megan bought a tennis racket for the first time. In no time, Megan fell in love with the sport and learned what it takes to thrive between the baselines as a key contributor for North Haven.
“It was an important part of my journey in high school. When you are in season, you play every day. It’s three months of your attention. Throughout my high school experience this was an important role and something that I will always remember, ”says Megan. “It’s really nice to see the new freshmen start the same way I did. I know they will have the same experiences as me. It’s nice to look back.