Athlete of the Week (Oct. 2-6): Kathleen Pittman

ROCKINGHAM — Kathleen Pittman has been named the Daily Journal’s Athlete of the Week for the week of Monday, Oct. 2.

Pittman is a senior for the Richmond girls tennis team who won both of her singles matches in the No. 3 spot against Seventy-First’s Aaliyah Smith and Scotland’s Samantha Bowen, respectively, in two Lady Raider victories. She was able to handle Smith without much resistance (6-0, 6-2), but needed three sets to defeat Bowen after falling behind early (4-6, 7-5, 12-10).

She also teamed up with fellow senior Meredith Stogner to dominate the No. 1 doubles (8-0) on Senior Day.

“Against Scotland, I had a pretty tough match as I was forced to come back and beat her in the tiebreaker. That was a very fun way to end my singles career,” Pittman said. “I feel like I played very well, very aggressive and was also consistent.”

That kind of play helped Pittman and senior teammate Destiny Buie, whom she considers her best friend, earn a spot in Regionals with their performance at the Sandhills Athletic Conference tournament on Monday, Oct. 9.

Pittman, who also plays soccer at Richmond, says their chemistry translates to the court and allows them to be successful because they’re able to feed off one another.

“Me and Destiny, we’re a very aggressive duo in doubles. We know where we’re going to be and what we need to do to keep each other up and into the game,” Pittman added. “We have fun on the court because we’re such good friends, and we know when to laugh things off.”

Head girls tennis coach Michael Way said Pittman has “improved a lot” in her second season on the tennis court.

“She was a little bit hesitant to get out there last year. She played kind of safe,” Way said. “But this year, she’s come into her own and has had a couple of pretty big wins.”

Below are Pittman’s answers to four of the questions presented by the Daily Journal:

Q: What’s your favorite sports memory so far?

A: Last year when the soccer team played at Lumberton and we went into double overtime. We won on a golden rule (sudden death) and I was able to play all 120 minutes with my team. It was very exciting and a very fun memory because we hadn’t beat Lumberton in seven years.

Q: What has been your favorite thing about this season?

A: It’s been so much more fun to play because I’ve gotten so much better. It’s been fun to be such a big contribution to the team — to step into my senior role, connect with my team and try to leave a good mark for next year.

Q: If you could have any super power, what would it be? Why?

A: I’d probably want to be invisible, like a fly on the wall so I can hear what people say without them knowing I’m there.

Q: Who’s your dream school?

A: UNC-Chapel Hill, because my dad and his six siblings all went there, and my brother and sister went there. It’s just a school that’s been in my family for a long time.