|Team: Tennis (Girls)|
|Name: Kasey Knox (Singles)|
Hanford senior Kasey Knox shouldn't remember all the details considering one tennis match about a year ago, but she does.
"We were playing against Ellensburg and I had Justine Call," Knox said. "I had her at 5-0 and 40-love in the second set (after not allowing a point the whole match), and she scored on me."
Knox, 18, rolls her eyes before confessing, "I can laugh about it now."
There's an emphasis on the "now".
"She was steamed," said Hanford coach Jim Wilson. "She badly wanted a second straight golden (perfect) set."
And though she didn't get it, her vivid recollection of the near perfect match says a lot about her focus.
Knox, 3-0 this season, appears likely to make her fourth trip to the state tournament in May. She took sixth in singles as a sophomore and junior, and fifth in doubles as a freshman. And the journey to state will likely include breezing through Mid-Valley District play, where she's never lost a match.
The latter is a stat that she's happy with.
"I'm a big perfectionist," Knox said. "I try to push myself all the time to work on every little thing and continually do better. It makes the game easier when you add things to your game, and it pays off."
For Knox, her work ethic has paid off in the form of versatility.
"When she first came here as a freshman, she was basically a baseline machine," Wilson said. "Now she's developed more of a serve and volley; she comes to the net much more often and she can win points just from her serve alone."
Off the court, Kasey describes herself as a sociable person. She hopes that her court skills and 3.6 GPA will help her when she visits Eastern Washington University next week. She plans to attend either Eastern or Lewis-Clark State this fall.
While at Hanford, however, Knox doesn't expect extra points for being the school's best player. And she's not going to cut any corners to get there.
"She isn't the type of player who will throw her racquet or anything, but you can tell she's into it," Wilson said. "She's so competitive; the fact that she was upset over losing one point tells the whole story."
Actually, that only begins to explain Knox's competitive nature.
The daughter of Tri-City Court Club pro Rob Knox and granddaughter of the late Clint Knox has long been exposed to athletic excellence. She began playing seriously when she was 11. Her brother Jake, a seventh-grader, and freshman sister Molly are also tennis players. Molly will join her on Hanford's team this season.
"Everyone knows me as Rob Knox's father so they expect me to do well," Kasey said. "But on the other hand, everyone knows me as Rob Knox's daughter, so they treat me pretty well."