Sixteen-year-old Maisie Silverman has been racquet-in-hand since age 5.
At age 10, she began competing, and now, six years later, she’s Maine’s tennis phenom. This spring, she secured the state’s 2012 girls’ singles title, and her team took the Eastern Class A championship, finishing the season undefeated.
Ultimately, the incoming junior at Brunswick High School says she likes the multi-faceted nature of tennis.
“I enjoy that it can be both completely individual and also a team sport,” she said.
On the individual level, she said, “I love it because it’s just you out there; you can’t blame anyone for an error, and if you win it’s all you, no one else.”
As for the team factor?
“You can cheer on everyone,” she said, “and it brings everyone close together.”
Not surprisingly, admires another young phenom, 25-year-old Maria Sharapova, who, through her “commitment and talent,” has secured a combination of dozens of women’s singles and grand slam titles, and just this month took home a silver medal from the Olympics.
“She trained all her life to obtain her goal of being No. 1 in the world,” Silverman said admiringly.
But, closer to home, she also looks up to her father, who has supported her through both wins and losses, and has also emphasized the importance of playing fair and being a “good sport and person,” she said.
“I know I would never be as good as I am without him,” she said.
Still, despite Silverman’s great successes at her young age, she’s not necessarily looking to pursue a career on the courts. Instead, she’s looking at something in the arts.
But she doesn’t have plans to quit anytime soon.
“It definitely is something I will continue to do for the rest of my life,” she said.
In the meantime, she said, she hopes to attend a college with a “prominent” tennis program, and to train hard enough to get into a Division 1 program.
“I want to become as good as I physically can,” she said.
At the same time, as her father has taught her, she wants to keep a solid head – and a positive attitude.
“My view,” she said, “is that, since you only have one life, it’s important to pursue your dreams, have fun and learn.”