DECORATED CAREER: Brownstown senior finishes up fourth year at No. 1 singles

For The Tribune

Tennis runs in the family for Brownstown Central’s Laken Reynolds.

“I started playing tennis in middle school,” she said. “I got into tennis through my sister, Lacy Daulton, our assistant coach. When she started playing in middle school and high school I would always go hit with her, or try to anyway. Sometimes I went to the practices. She is what got me started on it.”

Reynolds has had an excellent career at BCHS. She has been the Braves’ MVP, and an All-Mid-Southern Conference player the past three seasons.

Last week, she advanced to the finals of the individual sectional tournament at Bloomington North.

She was at No. 1 singles for the Braves throughout her career, and said she learned as she matured that she had to be ready to go 100 percent from that first serve.

“You have to start out strong,” Reynolds said. “That is where I got down because some matches it took me a minute to get warmed up, and I got down a game or two. But usually I came back in the stronger matches and competed.”

Reynolds said the experience she gained during her career was a key to her success.

“Experience really let me see the different ways people play, and what I have to do when to come to the net and different stuff like that,” she said. “You learn different techniques and strategies throughout the years with the different level of people you play.

“Once you play people above your level you learn a lot more than playing people at your level.”

Reynolds said she liked playing up front.

“like the net because I’m stronger with placement at the net than I would be with my forehands or backhands,” she said. “The strongest part of my game would probably be playing at the net. I can have a pretty good backhand, but I have little bad habits from my freshman year trying to just get the ball back over and I try to break them.

She enjoyed the home matches.

“I liked them a lot better,” Reynolds said. “We used to have problems with sand being all over the court from it raining and flowing down there, but they built them up and built the concrete around them so that’s nice. Our courts are a lot nicer.”

The senior said fans were also able to view the matches better this year than they did in the past.

In tennis, Reynolds likes the ebbs and flows of a match.

“I like the momentum you can build and the overall aspect of the gam,” Reynolds said. “A lot of it is mental, but a lot of it is ability so you really have to put all your effort into it to do it, and then once you’re doing better, you can smash it and get momentum built up. It’s just all-around a great aspect for me.

Reynolds has enjoyed attending BCHS.

“I like how small we are. Everybody knows everybody,” she said. “We’re not a real big school so we don’t have cuts on the tennis team and usually you have the same group of people you associated with every year and I just like how close of a family we are.”

[sc:pullout-title pullout-title=”Reynolds file” ][sc:pullout-text-begin]

Name: Laken Reynolds

High school: Brownstown Central High School

Parents: Lea Daulton and David Reynolds

Siblings: Lacy, Laysha, Haleigh

Sports: tennis 4 years

Athletic highlights: MVP 3 years, All-Mid-Southern Conference 3 years, advanced to finals of 2018 individual tournament

Organizations: Letterman’s Club, Robotics Club, Spanish Club, Conexus Interns, Sportsman’s Club

Plans after high school: go into pet grooming

Favorite food: pizza

Favorite musician; Luke Combs

Favorite movie: Where The Red Fern Grows

Favorite team: University of Kentucky