Jenny Ayala is a fireball. She possesses that rare and unique ability to explode with intensity when she is put into a competitive environment. The Mammoth High School Senior is committed in her first year on the tennis courts, but she hit the ground with such energy and force that she has grabbed the immediate attention of MHS Girls’ Tennis Head Coach Kyle Osland, and all of her fellow teammates. Likewise, she sends shockwaves of fear off to her competition. This is Jenny Ayala.
Jenny is a current student in the Economics class that I teach. Watching her presence in the classroom, you wouldn’t guess that Jenny is as intense as she is on the court. A bright and inquisitive student, she listens attentively to discourses orbiting the curriculum. She is mellow-mannered in the classroom, taking notes as needed and answering questions correctly. To no one’s surprise, she has a solid “A” in the class. Her favorite subjects are English and Science. She likes reading, and she loves labs.
School is not just a current responsibility for Jenny; it is also the pursuit of a lifelong career. When I asked Jenny what her career goals include, she responded that she wants to work within the field of Special Education in a public school setting. Quite the noble choice of profession. I asked her where the inspiration came from. Jenny has spent a lot of time around Taylor Worden over the years, and she has made a good connection with Taylor and his peers in class. She will make a fine teacher.
The University of Nevada, Reno is the gateway to her profession. After this year, Jenny seeks to join the Wolfpack both as athlete and academic. She wants to play soccer in college. Jenny has played 12 years of soccer. She started AYSO at age five, and will enter the season this winter as a four-year player at forward for the Dawgz. Former MHS Girls Soccer Coach Tom Cage described Jenny as “Tenacious. The first word to come to mind. She is a deep thinker about any activity she does. And with the same thinking and tenacity, she makes it fun for her and those around here. A unique characteristic.” The veteran soccer player gave tennis a go this season to try something new, and pick up some muscle and cardiovascular strength for training for soccer. MHS Tennis Team Captain Jade DaCosta said, “She is good at everything she does. All of a sudden, one day, she was good at tennis.” Head Coach Osland agreed that she picked up the sport immediately. He “wishes every player on the team brought that level of intensity.
“What makes her different is that it’s her first year playing tennis, and she is such a gifted athlete that she is beating players who have played longer than she has. When playing against players with a better swing, she beats them. Her intensity sets her apart. Her intensity and seriousness.”
Jenny receives a lot of motivation from her family members. Her parents Mario and Maricela are “super supportive” of her pursuits of athletics and academics. Her family pushes her to her limits and beyond. Her brothers Waldo and Francisco both set great examples, attending MHS and playing soccer for the Huskies. It is in her family blood. She feels intrinsically motivated to be super athletic. She simply loves being outside and playing. As for professional role models, she is a big fan of U.S. Women’s Soccer. She loves the U.S. National Team, in particular Alexa Morgan because she is “super athletic but super girly.” As for Jenny’s words of advice: “Never quit. Don’t give up. If you really want it, go for it.”
I am glad that Jenny plays for us, and not against us. She is a champion.