Valdosta Daily Times

Breaking News:

Local Sports

October 10, 2013

Jessica Tuggle represents Blazer Tennis as homecoming queen

VALDOSTA — Jessica Tuggle as a member of the Valdosta State women's tennis team almost never happened.

The Greater Atlanta Christian graduate nearly dismissed the opportunity to be a Blazer, because she feared that she might never be able to carve her own path outside of the one left by her father Jessie Tuggle — a five time Pro Bowler, College Football Hall of Famer, and the most recognizable athlete to ever don a Blazer football uniform.

After some consideration, however, Tuggle made the decision to take the challenge head on and enter her freshman year of college with a goal to stand outside of her father's shadow.

Since then, the Alpharetta native has done just that, and this week she is enjoying her most recent accomplishment — being crowned the 2013 Valdosta State University Homecoming Queen.

Now in her senior year, Tuggle looks back on her decision to come to Valdosta State.

"It was a hard decision for me. At first, I didn't want to come to VSU, because I didn't want to be known only as Jessie Tuggle's daughter," says Tuggle. "But since I first stepped foot on this campus, I'm proud to say that I have been able to make a name for myself with tennis, with the organizations I'm involved with such as Delta Sigma Theta, and now with becoming homecoming queen."

The well-rounded college experience of VSU's newest homecoming queen includes a tennis career that has featured several notable contests.

Earlier this year, Tuggle put together a stretch of doubles matches in which she defeated three ranked teams when she teamed up with Julianna Boehm to defeat sixth ranked Columbus State, followed by consecutive victories with teammate Alina Nagel over No. 48 Concordia and seventh ranked Saint Leo less than one month later.

Tuggle is looking forward to channeling her experience in previous years, and converting it into positive momentum heading into her final season.

 "I'm so excited for the upcoming season," said the senior. "It's crazy how fast it has been. I can remember my first day of practice and how nervous I was just being on the team, and now the other players are looking to me to play a leadership role. But I look up them too. They make me better, encourage me to play hard, and remind me to never give up even at times when the odds may be against us."

Even with the variety of accomplishments in her career and her desire to branch out, Tuggle doesn't hesitate to acknowledge the appreciation for her father's support.

When asked about what it meant to her to have her father stand by her side as she was crowned homecoming queen on Saturday, Tuggle gushes. "It means the world to me! I'm excited that I have made a name for myself as Jessica Tuggle, but I don't take anything for granted, and I love where I come from. I am just so glad to be his daughter."

Blazer fans can look forward to watching Tuggle and the rest of the Blazer tennis team compete throughout her senior season, which will begin in early 2014.

Keep an eye out for the Valdosta State tennis schedule coming soon to www.vstateblazers.com.

1
Text Only
Local Sports
  • Hall_Maddux.jpg Hall of Braves

    The weird part was that Jeff Idelson didn't take a lot of time to answer.
    "Is there any word or description that unifies this class?" was the query posed to the National Baseball Hall of Fame's president.
    "The common thread among the six is profound humility," Idelson said of former managers Joe Torre, Bobby Cox and Tony La Russa, and former players Frank Thomas, Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine, all of whom will be inducted into the Hall today. "I don't think I realized that fully until I spent time with them in December. It was uncanny to me, for the cumulative star power in that group, the humility among them. I think that's felt really strongly with baseball fans."

    July 27, 2014 2 Photos 1 Story

  • Hall_Cox.jpg Cox’s willingness to defend players stands out to local coaches

    Bobby Cox will be able to add Hall of Famer to his resume when he is inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame today in Cooperstown, N.Y.
    But the former Atlanta Braves manager’s legacy will remain the same to area baseball coaches: his willingness to defend his players.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo 1 Story

  • Valwood_Henderson.jpg Area teams hoping to get over the hump

    Past successes lead to present and future expectations.
    That’s the task faced by pretty much all 12 area high school football coaches present Saturday at In The Game Magazine’s South Georgia Football media day at the Holiday Inn conference center.
    It’s a task that also has the elite group searching for answers as to how to get past the state championship road block in recent years, aside from Valwood’s GISA Class AA crown in 2012.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • VHS little cats camp 1.jpg Valdosta hosts fundamental camp for ‘Little ’Cats’

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • VHS practice1.jpg Getting Back to Work

    Friday officially began the 2014 season for the Valdosta Wildcats and both the offense and defense came out and made statements.
    After holding spring and summer workouts, the Wildcats will practice four more times without pads before beginning full pad practice next week.

    July 26, 2014 2 Photos

  • Lowndes_Brooks1.jpg Lowndes second-most dominant program in state since 2004

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • Falcons_Jones.jpg Falcons open camp with ‘sense of urgency’

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • Padres_braves.jpg Padres, Hahn silence Braves

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • Former Blazer Kugbila out for season

    Now, after missing the 2013 season with a knee injury, this signals another hardship for the promising guard.

    July 25, 2014

  • LHS baseball signing Two Lowndes grads sign scholarships

    Lowndes graduates Henry Hoff and Nick Higginbotham decided to take the next step in their respective baseball careers together on Thursday as both signed a letter-of-intent with Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College in Tifton.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

Blazers Blog
More