McCann Carries Momentum Into College
James Maimonis, Communications and Engagement Coordinator | September 8, 2016
AMHERST, MA- Former Amherst Regional High School standout, Allison McCann, is looking to carry her positive momentum this summer into her collegiate tennis career. McCann, who won the New Balance High School National Championships back in July, has begun her first semester at Dartmouth College and plans to play tennis on the varsity team.
McCann is unlike many of the top New England tennis players—she competed at a high level in USTA junior tournaments while also proving she was one of the best high school player in the nation.
“I just really like playing on a team, and having that aspect of it is a lot more fun for me,” McCann said.
McCann was seeded fourth in the 64-person individual draw for the NB HS Championships at Harvard University and wasn’t expecting to come out on top. In her last two attempts, her best performance was a quarterfinal finish.ADVERTISEMENT
“I really didn’t expect to win, but I worked a lot this summer on being more aggressive, coming to the net more and hitting the ball earlier, and I think it’s helped in my success,” McCann said.
McCann, who was named the 2016 MassLive Co-Female Athlete of the Year, captained her varsity team and won multiple individual Western Massachusetts and state championships. When her season was over, she continued to play in tournaments to maintain her coveted junior ranking.
She competed in numerous tournaments this summer, headlined by the National Team Championships in Claremont, CA. McCann, along with the six other top New England juniors squared off against USTA’s 16 other sections.
“Team tournaments are great, because the competition is a higher and the players are a lot more similar to what you see in college,” McCann said. “It’s definitely a lot of fun to be part of that and important to have that experience. And, I’m close with all the girls, which definitely makes it better.”
McCann also met her future tennis coach through the Junior Nationals team. In 2015, the team was coached by Dartmouth Women’s head coach Bob Dallis, and he and McCann made an instant connection.
“We started talking after that and I heard really good things about Bob and the team. I go to meet the girls and see the campus and I had a lot of fun,” McCann said.”
Excited for the opportunity, the No. 8 ranked junior in the 18s division understands what is expected of her academically at an Ivy League school and playing in Division I tennis.
“I’ve talked to a bunch of girls on team, and I was a little nervous at first, but they all said as long as you work hard, it’s pretty manageable.”
Whatever comes her way as McCann embarks on her next journey in life, something she will always take with her are the lessons she’s learned from tennis.
“Tennis has definitely made me become a more positive person. Winning or losing, coming back from that applies to a lot of things in life, and having to work hard at something all the time has made me stronger. I also think it’s good to be focused on something I care about so much. Tennis is definitely a huge part of who I am so I’m glad I get to continue playing,” McCann said.