No. 1 seed Samantha McEachran poised for final Titan campaign
Published 12:00 am Thursday, August 17, 2023
By Jay Spivey
For the Clemmons Courier
The name McEachran has become ubiquitous in the West Forsyth girls tennis program.
After all, Gordon McEachran is the head coach for the Titans, and the best player on the team happens to be his daughter, Samantha, who is a senior.
“(Samantha) she’s been (here) three, hasn’t lost a match (regular season), won the conference (Central Piedmont 4-A) all three years, (and) conference player of the year three years,” said Gordon McEachran, who is in his second season of head coach for the girls tennis team after replacing Shana Krenz. “We’ll try to make it four.”
“She’s good with the players. She’ll get out there, she doesn’t like it. It’s held her back, not just for this year, but for school tennis in general.”
Samantha McEachran has more than proven herself on the court for the Titans.
“She wanted to be a part of a school team, but it’s held her back a lot,” Gordon McEachran said.
Despite her dominance in the Central Piedmont 4-A, Samantha McEachran has struggled in the NCHSAA Class 4-A tournament. She did make it out of the regional last year, but she faced Sieun Lee of Wake Forest Heritage in the first round of the state tournament and lost 6-0, 6-0.
“She’s got to play these top players more consistently, like more often,” Gordon McEachran said. “I mean, she’ll go out, and she’ll take on players three and four times in her grade level and first hit very competitively, but she hasn’t had that match experience and that match toughness. That’s what it’s about.”
Hoping to play college tennis, as well as the possibility of getting into the nursing program at either UNC Wilmington, East Carolina University or UNC at Charlotte, Samantha McEachran still has one more season left with West Forsyth, as well as with her dad as her head coach.
“It’s hard. Let me tell you why,” Gordon McEachran said. “I’m her dad. So, what the (heck) would I know? But all of a sudden, she’ll do something that I’ll mention to her, and she’ll come home and say, ‘I tried that today. That was really good.’
“I just wish she would listen and, you know, get out there and do a little bit of what I say. But as you say, father and daughter don’t always work. She thinks she’s 20-something.”
West Forsyth still has Samantha McEachran, who will defend her Central Piedmont 4-A title later this fall, but it lost three seniors from last year’s team — Vivian Do, who was also named all-conference, as well as Savannah Gilliam and Macy Vest.
According to Gordon McEachran, junior Sofia Tomay might be slotted into the No. 2 singles position after playing No. 6 last year, as well as playing No. 1 doubles with Samantha McEachran.
“It doesn’t matter who it is,” Gordon McEachran said. “I could throw anyone out there.”
West Forsyth finished 10-5 overall last year, including 8-4 in the Central Piedmont 4-A. Davie County won the conference last year after finishing 14-3 overall, and Reynolds was second with a record of 11-7.
“(Davie) possibly will (be the best team in the conference),” Gordon McEachran said. “They possibly will…There’s not a lot of depth. Reynolds, probably. They generally have a few kids that can play.
“But when you look at overall, it doesn’t matter when you’ve got Parkland with four players. I mean, why are they out to play? You know, I mean, it’s like, what the (heck) are you doing? And then you’ve got Glenn. He’s (Coach Kenny Smith) my buddy. He’s got five kids. And we don’t know yet whether East (Forsyth) has got a team.”
8/21 – Mount Tabor
8/23 – @ Parkland
8/28 – Glenn
8/30 – Reagan
8/31 – @ Oak Grove (4 p.m.)
9/5 – @ Davie
9/7 – @ RJ Reynolds
9/11 – East Forsyth
9/13 – @ Mount Tabor
9/14 – Oak Grove
9/18 – Parkland
9/20 – @ Glenn
9/21 – Atkins
9/25 – @ Reagan
9/27 – Davie
9/28 – @ Atkins
10/2 – RJ Reynolds (Senior Day)
10/4 – East Forsyth
10/10 – Conference tournament (9 a.m.)
10/18,23,25 and 11/1,4 – Dual Team
10/21-22 – Individual regionals
10/27-28 – States