League: Class 4A Mountain
Head coach: Rick Coop, second season
2017 record: 14-1 (13-0 4A Sunset/first)
Returning letter winners: Fourteen
Top athletes: Shelby Graber (Sr.), Kaya Richardson (Sr.), Caroline Hsu (Jr.)
Outlook: The Panthers’ only loss last season came in a tiebreaker in the Sunset Region semifinals and ended a run of three straight state championships.
With 14 letter winners back, Palo Verde is set up for another big year.
“After a tough loss during the semifinals in the 2017 region tournament, Lady Panthers have been sharpening their skills in the offseason and have been eagerly awaiting their first match in the 2018 season, keeping in mind that they are one team with one goal,” Coop said.
Graber teamed with Isabella Shelton to win the Class 4A state doubles title last year.
“We are taking the season day by day at this point and are focusing on skills, effort and attitude,” Coop said. “ As always we will look to put our best student-athletes on the court that can meet this expectation on and off the court and can fulfill the Panther promise.
“We are looking forward to the challenges of the new season.”