In the last couple of years Sara Dunn, a student at Mercer County Senior High, has been close to winning a women’s singles tennis regional title. Going into her senior year, her focus is on bringing home the championship.
Dunn has been playing tennis since she was 6 years old. Her parents, Jamie and Leigh Dunn, sent her to a tennis camp at Anderson Dean Community Park taught by Tim Colleran. The camp was meant to be an excuse to get the kids out of the house, but it turned into a passion. “I love tennis because it is a sport you can play your whole life,” said Dunn.
Colleran, who taught tennis across the country and world, became a mentor and coach for Dunn in her high school years. Colleran unexpectedly died of a heart attack in June of 2022 and Dunn finished the summer season in his memory bringing a koala, representing Colleran’s home country of Australia, with her to each match.
In her sophomore year, Dunn lost in the quarterfinals of the region and qualified for state. In her junior year, she lost in the region finals and advanced to the state where she won two rounds. Each year, she has worked to improve her game in the off season and this summer is no different. She is currently taking tennis lessons twice a week working on all aspects of her game, hitting multiple times a week with other players and entering as many tournaments as she can.
During the winter, she is on a different kind of court. She can also be seen starting for the Mercer County Lady Titans basketball team. Dunn was an unsung hero of the region tournament where each round she battled in the post to defend against much taller opponents. The Lady Titans won the 12th region tournament and went on to play at the KHSAA Sweet Sixteen at Rupp Arena in Lexington.