Naperville North’s Abbie Boswell sings winning tune in singles, then doubles

SHARE Naperville North’s Abbie Boswell sings winning tune in singles, then doubles
SHARE Naperville North’s Abbie Boswell sings winning tune in singles, then doubles

Sometimes, the best moves are born out of necessity.

Such was the case earlier this fall, when Naperville North tennis coach Heather Henricksen asked if Abbie Boswell could make the switch to singles on the way to a meet at Wheaton Warrenville South.

Halfway through dual season, the Huskies had just lost their No. 1. Henricksen hesitated to broach the move to Boswell.

Boswell, a senior, hadn’t played singles in over a year, and as Henricksen put it, “mentally, she’d rather be playing doubles.”

“I went up to her and said, ‘How would you feel about playing singles?” Henricksen said. “She said, ‘I’ll be rusty, but I can do it.’”

Boswell dropped the first three games in Wheaton, but then came back for a straight-set win.

It turned out to be the turning point in the Huskies’ season. They won nine straight duals, and the senior-laden group capped it off by winning the DuPage Valley Conference meet — Boswell leading the way with a straight-set win at No. 1 singles.

“Abbie really put this team on her back,” Henricksen said. “She allowed everyone else to stay where they were.”

Boswell returned to doubles for sectionals, where she and Jessica Hu took second to qualify for this week’s state meet.

It’s the latest feather in the cap for a renaissance young lady. A two-time All-State soccer player committed to Ball State, Boswell is also a gifted singer.

Boswell, a second soprano or alto, sings with the choir at North. She does the chorus for fellow North student Jack Costanza’s raps at garage shows.

Earlier this year, Boswell made it to the finals of the Sinfonietta Bel Canto opera competition, where she performed with the Sinfonietta Bel Canto Orchestra at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Downers Grove.

“I just always loved to sing,” said Boswell, who plans to major in either music and media production or music performance at Ball State. “I don’t know where it came from.”

Boswell qualified for state as part of a doubles team her freshman and sophomore years — making top 16 on the second try — but didn’t get that opportunity last year.

At soccer nationals with her NSA Jaguars club team in the summer of 2013, she was hurt on a shot, suffering a hyperextended knee and torn cartilage. Surgery and seven months of rehabilitation followed, costing Boswell her junior tennis season.

Although her future is in soccer, Boswell never gave a second thought to quitting tennis.

“I love the girls on my team and I love my coach,” Boswell said. “It’s my last year — I want to play tennis.”

Boswell’s move to singles proved a good fit for North, allowing Henricksen to slot Cindy Zhu in at No. 2.

Her home is at doubles with Hu. Multitalented in her own right, Hu has been a state placer in badminton and boasts a perfect ACT score.

“I just love doubles,” Boswell said. “I love being with a teammate and getting to talk to someone. I like singles, I just like doubles better.”

The Latest
The man, 40, was shot about 12:40 a.m. in the 9000 block of South Emerald Avenue.
She’s been supporting him and doesn’t want him to be destitute, but she’s no longer attracted to him and has fallen in love with someone else.
As the asylum-seeker crisis drags on, opposition voices are becoming louder. We have to be loud, too, a Chicago principal writes as he reflects on Yom Kippur.
Notre Dame still hasn’t beaten Ohio State since 1936.