Gerschultz small but mighty

Daily Pilot High School Athlete of the Week

Sage Hill sophomore emerges as reliable singles player for Lightning, who want to repeat as league champions.

October 18, 2013|By Matt Szabo
  • Sage Hill School sophomore Jaclyn Gerschultz is the Daily Pilot High School Athlete of the Week.
Sage Hill School sophomore Jaclyn Gerschultz is the Daily… (KEVIN CHANG, Daily…)

Jaclyn Gerschultz plays several sports, but before she started them all she was playing the piano.

She's been playing since she was about 4 years old. She practices everyday for 45 minutes, and each Monday she goes to Wenjen Piano Studios in Seal Beach.

"We have recitals once a month on the weekends, and then we have competitions like seven times a year where we go other places," Gerschultz said.

After talking to Gerschultz, a sophomore at Sage Hill School, one gets the idea that she can compete in whatever she wants. She played softball growing up, first as a pitcher then as a third baseman and shortstop. She would go to Torrance for travel-ball practices with her team, the OC Dynasty.

Just one problem. The Lightning don't have a softball program.

This didn't deter Gerschultz, the Daily Pilot Athlete of the Week. Nowadays when she's not tickling the ivories, find her on the tennis court in the fall for Sage, the soccer field in the winter or running track in the spring. Last year she was Sage on the 4x100 relay team, along with Elise Sugarman, Sophia Potter and Lauren Thunen, that ran at the CIF Southern Section Division 4 preliminaries at Carpenteria High.


Don't be thrown off by Gerschultz's quiet nature. As a three-sport athlete, she packs a lot of athleticism into that 5-foot-2 frame. Oh yeah, did she tell you that she also has a black belt in taekwondo?

But, for now it's girls' tennis season, and Gerschultz has emerged as the most consistent singles player for a team that is contending for the Academy League title. She was 13-0 in league entering Friday's first-place showdown against rival St. Margaret's, and 26-10 overall. The Lightning toppled St. Margaret's, 12-6, as Gerschultz won two of three.

"She's really come out as a very solid singles player," Sage Hill Coach A.G. Longoria said. "She's really stepped up for us ... It's hard to believe. Every coach of every sport wants her."

When she arrived at Sage Hill last year, Gerschultz had been playing tennis casually for a couple of years, but had never so much as played a match. Yet she excelled almost right away. Last year, she played at No. 1 doubles with then-senior Lauren Hsu, helping the Lightning unseat St. Margaret's and win their first league title in five years.

Gerschultz said at times she relied on the leadership of Hsu, who was one of three senior captains with Liana Korber and Kimberly Brown.

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