A member of the West Orange High School tennis team, junior Lucas Mach plays on Line 1 for the Warriors out on the court. Though he’s not sure what his future holds, Mach hopes to one day go into the medical field.
When did you first get into tennis?
I started playing tennis probably around fifth grade, and I got into the sport because I was trying a lot of sports — I did a lot of YMCA sports — and I was trying to find out what I was good at. My parents played in high school, so they took me out and I just played for fun with my dad and my little brother. I started to enjoy the sport, so he paid for lessons.
What is it about the sport that has kept you playing for so long?
It’s a good reason to stay in shape, and it’s just a lot of fun with competition and trying to get better than other people. If they’re getting better than me, and I have beat them before, I don’t want them get better than me — I want to stay on top of them and not lose my title.
What has been your favorite thing about playing at West Orange?
Probably the people here — my teammates. I’ve played with some of them since freshman year and I’ve grown good relationships with them. And even the new people who join the team, we welcome them and you get to make a lot of good, new friends that you can keep (up) with.
What is the most challenging part about playing tennis, and what is your favorite part about playing tennis?
I think the most challenging part about playing tennis is keeping the drive to want to keep playing in the point, because if you’re tired you want to stop but you have to keep going — you have to stay in the game and keep focused. (My) favorite part would probably (be) being in close games — I don’t like shutting the person out, it’s not as fun. If it’s a fun game, your teammates are cheering for you, and when it’s just a shut out on either side, there is no fun in that.
What are the best words of advice you have been given about tennis?
Just never let yourself get down, and stay in the game. Don’t get depressed, because that really ruins things.
When you do hit those tough streaks on the court, how do you mentally get past that?
I just don’t want to let my family down, my team down or everyone down — you’re playing for everyone, not just yourself. When you’re playing in a tournament, you’re kind of playing for you, but when you’re playing with a high school team, your score counts toward everything — it’s not just you.
Coming into this season, did you have any goals in mind that you wanted to accomplish?
So this year we are in a new district now, so we don’t have to play against the other teams that we did before, so I’m kind of hoping we have a better chance at districts.
After a match, if you could have your ideal meal, what would you have?
Probably the spicy chicken deluxe at Chick-fil-A with two Chick-fil-A sauces with it and fries.
When you grow up, what do you want to be?
I think for now I kind of want to be a dentist, and I want to go to UF and see where it goes from (there). Obviously if I don’t like that career I can change, but something in the medical field.