VYPE: When, why, and how did tennis become your sport?
Lars Castellanos: My first time playing tennis was summer of 2019 in a summer camp. I remember telling my mom I didn’t want to play tennis even though I’ve never tried it, but she insisted on making me play. Once I started playing, I fell in love with the sport right on the spot.
VYPE: Did you ever play other sports?
LC: Throughout all of my life I’ve done multiple sports such as football, soccer, track, cycling, triathlon, and swimming.
VYPE: What do you love about playing tennis?
LC: Something I love about tennis is that every time I play it all of my thoughts just fade away and I just focus on enjoying the moment. I also love how competitive it can be.
VYPE: How did it feel to compete in No. 1 singles at the 6A state championships last spring?
LC: Being my first ever state championship, I found myself being very nervous and stressed, but at the same time, I was very happy and excited because I made it to that point and I was able to compete against some amazing players.
VYPE: What did you learn from the experience and how have you applied it to your training?
LC: Something that I’ve been applying into my training is putting 100% effort in every drill, exercise, or game we play. I also try to practice how I would play in an actual match. Tennis is very, very mental and from all of my experience, I try and train my mind for all of those situations I experience in a match or a tournament.
VYPE: As you round out your senior year, what experience has been the most valuable for you?
LC: A experience that was very valuable for me was in my first tournament of the season when I played Bartlesville. I was down 3-0 in the first set and instead of slowing down I tried to come back and not lose faith. I ended up winning that match and placing 2nd in the tournament.
VYPE: What’s one thing everyone should know about Lars Castellanos, but few ask?
LC: Something that I think people should know about me is that I was born in Mexico. Also people think sometimes I’ve played tennis my whole life since I’m decently good, but the truth is I started playing my sophomore year of high school.
VYPE: What does it mean to be a Southmoore SaberCat?
LC: To me, being a SaberCat means to have good sportsmanship and always be humble.
VYPE: What are your post-graduation plans?
LC: My plans after high school are going to OU and study medicine, but I’ll still play tennis and try to get better and hopefully get a chance to play in college.