unnamedPLYMOUTH – Plymouth senior Audie Plothow has a lot in common with her fellow athletes. With COVID-19 taking away what promised to be a very special season on the tennis courts for her and her teammates, there is at least something for her to look forward to as she will head to Bethel University in the fall as a member of their tennis team.

“It’s really hard to explain, it just feels weird,” she said. “You feel powerless. We had everybody on our team back and we were able to go to the semi-state last year. We felt we at least had a chance to go to state this year.”

“We’ve been able to stay in touch with each other by text or whatever,” said Plothow. “It makes it a little easier that in a way we’ve been able to go through it all together. It helps me that I’m going to play in college. I’m glad I can still have a chance to play. It helps in that kind of grieving process.”

Plymouth’s Lady Pilgrims were indeed looking forward to at very least a very memorable season. Also, a returning member of Plymouth’s number one doubles team, an appearance in the individual state finals was within reach, but unfortunately will be forever in the “What If?” column for the girls. Able to have a senior season on the Plymouth volleyball team the missed chance for a run in tennis is tougher.

“It was something that we were all looking forward to,” said Plothow. “It would have been really special to have that opportunity with teammates that you’ve spent your whole life playing with.”

Still, the chance to move on to Bethel will allow Plothow to keep playing a sport she’s had so much success at and provide some new challenges as well.

“When I went up for a visit I played against one of the assistant coaches and played against one of their doubles teams and also a singles match,” she said. “I pretty much played doubles in high school but in college, you play both singles and doubles in a match. I’m pretty confident with playing doubles but it’s been a long time since I’ve played a singles match.”

“I played a lot of singles over the winter in South Bend,” she said. “I think I’m ready.”

The coming college season almost didn’t happen though.

“I wasn’t sure that I wanted to play in college,” said Plothow. “I got in touch with the coach (Brad Foster) and went up and met him. After my visit, I was excited to get going.”

It will also bring some academic challenges to Audie who wants to enter a very unique field.

“I’m going to study sign language interpretation,” she said. “I had thought about studying speech pathology and going to Ball State. (Parents Carin and Tony Plothow who teach special education at Plymouth) both are involved with helping kids with unique situations and I felt that was something that I wanted to do.”