ACHS's Bryce Walker takes home tennis state title

Staff Writer
Gonzales Weekly Citizen
Ascension Christian freshman tennis player Bryce Walker.

After winning his semifinal match early Saturday morning, Bryce Walker saw the chance for redemption. Walker’s win gave him the opportunity to play Ascension Episcopal’s Brandon Abdella for the state title—an opponent who had dealt Bryce a tough loss at the Regional Tournament a week earlier.

Walker knew what he was up against and began to mentally prepare himself for the final match of the tournament.

And then came the rain.

Before the match could take place, a huge storm blew through Monroe, leaving many to think that the final game would have to wait for another day. However, the clouds eventually broke, and Walker and Abdella finally took the court around 5 p.m. And it was a match for the ages.

Stroke for stroke, Walker and Abdella forced each other to bring every ounce of strength and skill they possessed. But, ultimately, it was Walker who earned the hard-fought victory, 7-6, 7-5, winning his first individual title as a freshman.

When asked about the match, Walker said, “When I played (Abdella) the week before at regionals, he beat me, 6-4, 6-2. I played hard that day, and it really was a tough loss. When I played him at the state tournament, my ball placement had really improved, and my serve was really on. I ended up having two or three aces. Overall, I feel like I just played better [than the previous match against Abdella].”

Ascension Christian’s head tennis coach, Lisa Pellegrin added, “It was such an amazing match to watch. Bryce probably played the best I have ever seen him play. We are so proud of his accomplishments. Winning a state title as a freshman is simply amazing. I can’t wait to see what he is able to accomplish over the next three years.”

Bryce is the son of Ken and Kimberly Walker of Prairieville, Louisiana.