All-Empire girls tennis player of the year: Marghi Andreassi

By HOWARD SENZELL
FOR THE PRESS DEMOCRAT

It didn’t take long for Montgomery freshman Marghi Andreassi to assert herself as the best girls high school tennis player in the Redwood Empire.

Playing her first North Bay League match on Sept. 4, the 15-year-old went out and defeated reigning Player of the Year Fu Long in straight sets.

To prove the victory was no fluke, Andreassi beat Long twice more on her way to an undefeated league season.

Those victories made her a clear choice for All-Empire Player of the Year honors.

Andreassi was born in L’Aquila, Italy, and came to the United States with her parents in 2004. She was 4 years old.

At the age of 6, she picked up a tennis racquet for the first time and rallied with her father, Paolo.

“I loved it from the start,” Andreassi said. “I also tried basketball and soccer, but tennis was always my favorite.”

Seeing that she loved the sport and had natural ability, her parents enrolled her in the youth program at La Cantera Racquet Club.

Under the tutelage of resident pro John Potter, she began learning the fundamentals of the game.

“She was very athletic,” Potter recalled. “She picked up everything so easily, I knew she would be a special player.”

By the age of 11, Andreassi began playing youth tournaments in Northern California. She also started training with HRT Tennis Academy teachers Jose Hilla and Anarit Sanchez.

As part of the program, Andreassi has spent portions of the past two summers in Spain.

The lessons and tournament experience paid off in the NBL season.

Her high school coach, Sean Benoit, saw she was something special the first time he saw her hit a ball.

“Her footwork sets her apart from most high school players,” he said. “She’s had a lot of training, but is also a natural.

“She’s very outgoing and is a good teammate. She’s provided a spark.”

Andreassi’s forehand is her best weapon and she also has an effective kick serve.

In addition to keeping up her 4.5 grade point average, Andreassi either takes a lesson or plays every day.

“My goal is to play in college and to do that I’m just going to have to keep improving.”

2014-15 All-Empire girls tennis player of the year Marghi Andreassi of Montgomery High School. (John Burgess / The Press Democrat)

2014-15 All-Empire girls tennis player of the year Marghi Andreassi of Montgomery High School. (John Burgess / The Press Democrat)