FORT BRANCH -- Having a dad as a teaching pro, Addison Brown did not have much of a choice but to like tennis.
Ever since she was two years old, the soon to be Gibson Southern senior, has had a tennis racket on her hands.
But it wasn't until this spring when she finally stepped on the court as a member of a high school team.
Brown missed her sophomore season due to a wrist injury after deciding not to play for a high school team her freshman year.
The time away from the court as well as her new teammates helped Brown fall in love with the sport all over again.
Brown wrapped up a 21-2 campaign which netted her being named the 2019 Daily Clarion Girls Tennis Player of the Year.
The No. 1 singles player helped the Lady Titans to a ninth straight Pocket Athletic Conference team title as well as a tenth straight sectional championship.
Prior to this season, Brown had only played as an individual in various junior organizations.
"Injured or not, I knew it was time to start getting ready for college and I just had to push through the pain," Brown admitted. "I wanted to use high school as a transition back into the sport after the doctors cleared me to play. Being part of a team was a new experience and I loved it."
What she liked most about being a Lady Titan, was having a cheering section for every match and also getting to root for teammates after she finished up.
"When I played as an individual it always just my parents there for me," Brown stated. "But this year there was constant cheering from about 10 other girls on the team. No matter if I won or lost a point my teammates were always there cheering for me and I had someone to cheer on as well.
"It all helped me fall in love with the sport again and I fell in love with the team. They were all great. They all became like family, everyone supported everyone and I had never experienced anything like that before."
The wrist injury she sustained before the start of her sophomore season also proved to turn out to be a positive for Brown.
Prior to the injury, the thought of getting burned out on the sport crossed her mind.
Brown was training and playing year around.
"I went to doctor after doctor and I still don't really know what happened," Brown explained. "I was playing every day, nonstop, but no one could tell me exactly what was wrong."
The injury flared back up this past spring which caused her to miss a couple of matches.
"I ended up getting a cortisone shot which helped feel less pain," Brown said. "I still feel some pain, but I have just kind of gotten used to it now."
Although the time off diminished some of her skills, it made her realize one important thing.
"The time off I really learned how much I really loved playing tennis because I missed it a lot," she explained. "When I was playing everyday I was worried about possibly getting burned out, but after a week of not being able to play, I was dying to get back out on the court."
Even with being back on the court, something was still missing early in Browns season.
The weekend of April 19th, she found it.
Brown knocked off Terre Haute South's Lauren Rowe (second team all-state selection) in a tiebreaker.
"Besides the match I lost early in the season, it was the first close match I had," Brown explained. "I lost the first set (to Rowe) and then I remembered I just needed to be who I was. I turned it around and that is when I fell back in love with the sport knowing that is what it is all about."
Brown had dropped the first set to Rowe, 6-0, before bouncing back with a 6-1 win and a 10-6 in the tiebreaker.
"I was mentally down (after the first set) and I knew I needed to flip it around," she stated. "After I got it going it felt like the old me when I was younger."
In those younger days, Brown had made the climb to a No. 9 National ranking and was constantly in the Top 10 in the Midwest Rankings including spending some time as the top youth
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player in Indiana.
She hopes this season is a comeback to those high rankings.
"The injury set me back a lot, but I have been working to get back and get back in shape," she said. "Hopefully this summer I can continue having success and get my rankings up there again."
No matter what happens this summer, Brown mentioned she is determined to have a strong senior season.
"I am very excited," she said. "I am going to grind hard this year and hopefully go out there and win a state championship."
College coaches have been flooding her inbox with emails already.
"I have had a lot of contact with some of the lower level programs, but hopefully I can start getting offers from the programs I want after this summer," Brown explained.
And she can't wait to experience the team aspect of things either.
"This past season felt really good to be a part of something like that," Brown said. "I have never had something like that which mattered so much and it was great. It was a good experience and I am excited to do it again next year."
2019 Season Highlights
-- 21-2 overall record
-- 20 straight wins
-- Undefeated in Pocket Athletic Conference matches
-- Undefeated at Terre Haute North Invite
-- Undefeated at Jasper Invite
-- Pocket Athletic Conference First Team
-- First Team All-State
Getting to Know Addison Brown
iPhone or Android? iPhone
Favorite brand to wear? Nike
What's in the bag? Rackets, grips, dampners, bandaids, visors, water and gatorade bottles, granola bars, pony-tail holders
Brand of racket? Head
Favorite shot to hit? Backhand, it's my favorite thing
Favorite TV Show? The Office
Music to listen to before match? Used to be Sam Hunt but nothing anymore, it's kind of a distraction
Any superstitions? I have certain things I do every match out of habit, but I can't remember...I can step on the lines unlike some players.
Name of Dog? Nike
Favorite social media app? SnapChat
SnapChat stats? Score is over 700,00 and longest streak is over 780
Funniest teammate(s)? Lexie Birch and Syndey Goedde because they both try not to be funny but they just are.
Favorite road trip moment? Leaving the Jasper Invite and blasting music which was probably a little inappropriate
Favorite ice cream flavor? Vanilla bean
Favorite ice cream topping? Sprinkles
Toughest player ever faced? Amanda Anisimova
Favorite player to watch? Roger Federer, he is amazing
Funniest memory of coach Kyle DeBord? I don't like to wear socks when I play and during the sectional championship match, I forgot my shoes at home and none of the girls wanted to let me borrow their shoes cause of it and coach called me out on it during our end-of-the season banquet.
Favorite subject in school? History
Least favorite subject? Pre-calculus
Favorite teacher or administrator? Marsha Mischler
Funniest thing you've heard during a match? Some opponents cuss me out and I think it's really funny
Favorite movie? Stuck in Love or Elf
Favorite vacation spot? San Diego
Parents: Douglas and Barbra Brown