The defending State Champion Saint Andrew’s Boys Tennis Team has attained a UTR Power 6 rating as the #1 high school team in the United States, while the 4 time defending State Champion Saint Andrew’s Girls Team is rated #2 in the nation, just percentage points out of first place.
Saint Andrew’s combined Power 6 numbers for both boys and girls teams rate the Scots' overall program as #1 nationwide, with a combined Power 6 number of 111.88 as of February 14, 2021.
“Universal Tennis Rating (UTR) powered by Oracle, is a rating system that provides a single, unifying language and standard for tennis players across ages, geography, gender and economics. All players, regardless of age, gender, geography or skill level, are rated on the same scale between 1 and 16.50 based on actual match results.” (as defined on the MYUTR.com website)
UTR is the gold standard for which all tennis players are judged, from Djokovic and Halep to novice junior tournament players. UTR has also become an incredibly important tool for college coaches in their recruitment of high school athletes as well.
In recent years, UTR has become more and more involved in high school tennis, and they developed a rating system for high schools using their Power 6 formula. Power 6 is a combined rating of the top 6 players on each team, to generate overall team rankings, and it is updated daily.
Saint Andrew’s Senior Captain Sara Snyder is proud of the team’s success. “It’s amazing to be part of such a great team! We are very competitive with each other, but in a way we build each other up and make each other better. This achievement on UTR is a way to prove that we are one of the best teams in the country, and would be one of the favorites in a National Tournament.”
Senior Jacob Lowen, a 6 year varsity letter winner for Saint Andrew’s agrees. “I am very proud to be the top UTR (rated) team in the nation. I know other teams will be looking to take that spot from us, and I look forward to competing in order to remain in that spot!”
Both the boys and girls teams are looking to get back on the court in their bids to defend their state titles. Missing out last year was a disappointment for everyone, and those who remain from the 2019 teams, are eager to prove they are still the team to beat. No one is more prepared than Lowen.
“Since we were unable to have a chance to defend last year, I feel even more motivated to be competing to win a state title in 2021. It’s always the most fun time of the year when I'm able to play for Saint Andrew’s with my friends.”
Snyder regards her high school tennis experience as one of the highlights of her tennis career as well. “I have loved being a part of the team since my first season as a freshman. I was welcomed with open arms to such an amazing team that never let me down. I have played some of my best and toughest matches with endless support from my teammates. Our success as a team is a direct representation of all the work every single person puts in during practice and matches. I am so grateful to be a part of such a hardworking and supportive team.”
Perhaps the most important component of success for the Saint Andrew’s Tennis Program is the sense of camaraderie...the belief that tennis is one program, and not separate boys and girls teams.
“I think Coach Reid (Rafter ‘85) and Coach Beth (Daub ‘07) create an amazing environment which allows our team to connect well together,” said Lowen. “ I think this really shows when we are out playing in big matches and we are all pumping each other up. We are all having fun whether we are winning or losing and that is a testament to the culture of Saint Andrew’s tennis.”
Head Coach and Director of Tennis, Reid Rafter, had this to say about the recent UTR recognition and his time with the Scots. “We’ve always had great coaches and competitive teams here at Saint Andrew’s dating back to the days when I attended in the ‘80’s. We have worked very hard to continue building on that tennis tradition since I was named Director of Tennis in 2015. Coach Beth and I are super proud of what the kids have been able to achieve, and the UTR Power 6 rating is something they can take with them forever.”
The Scots will be playing Doral Academy on February 25 at home. The Doral girls’ team is currently ranked #1 in the country and the boys are #7 making this an exciting match-up for high school tennis. Stay tuned for more details as this event will be live streamed by our sports broadcasting class. Go Scots!