Shugar leads tennis team into state


Jamie Bikales

Junior Avi Shugar prepares to play a shot during a match against Oregon Episcopal School on April 16. Shugar, who transferred to Lincoln this year, hopes to lead the team to a state championship.

The Lincoln men’s tennis team dominated the PIL once again this season. After defeating Grant in their final matchup, the Cardinals ended the season undefeated in PIL, with their districts starting May 2. Lincoln is hoping to have as many players as possible qualify for the state tournament, in hopes of defeating the top seed and defending champion Jesuit.

Throughout the season, one player on the team has stood out above all competition – junior Avi Shugar.

Shugar moved to Portland from Eugene earlier this year and joined the tennis team when the season started this spring. His goal is to help Lincoln win the state championship.

Shugar has played the sport and enjoyed it throughout his entire life, and his effort and determination has gotten him far.

According to the Tennis Recruiting Network, Shugar is the top tennis player in the state of Oregon, and places 115th in the entire country.

“I really enjoy playing tennis, and thanks to the help from my parents and coaches I was able to pursue it and get to where I am today,” says Shugar.

Shugar is already a decorated player. He won the consolation bracket at state when he was a freshman, and made it to the quarterfinals when he was a sophomore.

“He’s a really good player, and his addition to the team this year has definitely boosted our chances to win state,” says junior Allen Song, a teammate. “We got second place last year, and this year I think our chances at winning state are definitely pretty high.”

The Lincoln boys team has not won a state championship in the sport since 1985.

Coach Todd Mansfield, who is in his first year, also has high hopes for the team this season.

“I think Avi has helped reshape Lincoln tennis into the powerhouse that it once was in the 1980s,” says Mansfield. “He has brought so much positive energy to the team that they all believe they can topple Jesuit this year.”

The state tournament occurs on May 17 through May 19, where the Cardinals will try and take down Jesuit to claim the state trophy.

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