State champion Citron unbeaten, unstoppable
So just how does a sophomore celebrate a clean sweep of the high school tennis season?
For Bedford High’s Carley Citron, the answer was pretty simple.
Citron just does what comes naturally, scooping up the rackets and finding a court, be it practice or a tournament, at home or somewhere on the road.
“I will take some time off, too,” she laughed, while reached on a vacation (with her rackets, of course) in Canada. “This is what I love.”
What a spring it was for the rising BHS junior. She set a goal after reaching the NHIAA State Individual championship match as a freshman.
“I wanted to win the individual title. That was the focus,” said Citron. “There was definitely an aspect of pressure.
“Going into the high school season, so much is expected. But I did a lot of mental training. It helped me stay focussed and get into the zone. I used the crowds and all the pressure around it to my advantage.”
Citron was nothing short of spectacular this spring, helping lead the Bulldog girls to their second straight state championship, fourth in the last five years.
On the court, she did not lose, a perfect 20-0 in sin gles and an unbeaten state champ in doubles as well with regular partner Taylor Suozzo.
It was the team victory that Citron savored most.
“I really like that aspect. I mean everyone on the team is just so supportive,” said Citron.
“Tennis is usually a lonely sport. It was nice to have teammates on and off the court, doing things together. We had a pasta dinner and a sleepover, lots of team-bonding stuff. This group is so close.
“And doubles was really different because Taylor and I are such good friends off the court. We pump each other up. We know each other’s games so well.”
Citron carries a 4.6 gpa in school, and the recruiting process, albeit slightly, has begun.
She says that tennis and academics go hand and hand.
“The tennis really helps me balance things,” she said. “School is really important to me. I’m just to find a college that fits me both in tennis and academically.”
Citron can take a bit of a break with the books as summer is here.
But don’t think the tennis regimen will slow down.
She heads to Connecticut this weekend for sectionals, and if she’s not playing elsewhere she can often be found on the home court of her coach, Nancy Grimes.
“I tend to play every day,” said Citron, summing up in just six words the secret of her on-court success.