HOWLAND, Ohio (WYTV) – The Howland girls’ tennis team is coming off an impressive win over Canfield last week, and senior Francesca Elisco has a lot to do with their success as they battle for a conference title.
She’s been their number one player three of the last four years. Plus, she’s a straight-A student and active in her community, earning Francesca our “Student Athlete of the Week.”
“Tennis keeps me grounded,” said Elisco. “It helps me cope with everything going on. If I have a bad day, I can go play tennis.”
Francesca has been playing tennis since she was six years old and is now a captain and leader for the Tigers. She’s a natural on the court and a three-time Sectional Qualifier.
“I am extremely competitive,” said Elisco. “I mean, tennis is the topic of a lot of my conversations with anybody who dares to ask me. I always strive to be the best, if I can brag about something I’m going to.”
Francesca’s tennis journey has not been an easy one, though. She suffered a shoulder injury last fall and had to battle back this season.
“I utilized all of my quarantine time to train as hard as I could so I could come back even stronger this year and I have,” said Elisco. “I would say I’ve made a huge breakthrough, especially mentally which I would say is probably 90% of my game.”
Off the court, Francesca carries a 4.2 GPA and currently takes all honors classes through YSU’s CCP program. In fact, she’s on track to graduate with 28 college credits.
Next year, she hopes to play tennis in college and study chemistry. Her father is a dentist and Francesca hopes to follow in his footsteps and one day become an oral surgeon.
“My grades are my priority they always have been,” she said. “My dad has always been a pushing force, always helping me aim for higher. I love learning, it’s one of my favorite things. I love history classes, sciences.”
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