“All the world’s a stage,” said Jaques in William Shakespeare’s “As You Like It.”
Bothell High’s Schuller brothers, Andrew and Johnny, have the tennis court as their spot to shine, but also the raised platform where they appear in school choir and drama productions.
“I like to perform in front of crowds,” said senior Andrew. Added freshman Johnny: “I like to be on the stage and put on a competitive show.”
This fall, the duo has been unleashing its tennis talent as the Cougars’ No. 1 doubles team, and the Schullers hope to take their show on the road to the 4A state tournament in May in Richland.
First up will be the 4A KingCo tournament next week at Skyline High.
The boys said they challenge each other to become better players, and this especially came into play during a match to decide who would be Bothell’s No. 1 and No. 2 singles players in nonleague contests this year. The Schullers — who play doubles in KingCo matches — were tied 4-4 before Andrew gutted out a 6-4 win.
“It was pretty heated. He never challenged me that way before. He’s getting better,” Andrew, 17, said with a laugh.
Johnny shook his head and smiled. Earlier in the interview, the 14-year-old noted: “My older brother has impacted me in a good way. I really just love the sport.”
Bothell coach Michael Pizzo said the brothers — who sported a 3-2 record at press time — balance each other on the court. Andrew is consistent and provides maximum court coverage while Johnny chips in with an aggressive style and is more vocal. They’re both mentally tough and Pizzo said they always communicate after every point.
The Schullers train with Northwest High Performance Tennis in Kirkland and have played in a bevy of national tournaments. Johnny is a United States Tennis Association (USTA) regionally ranked player at No. 13 in the 14U age group. Andrew is USTA-ranked 68th regionally in the 18U age group and placed third in the KingCo singles tournament the last two years.
Andrew began playing tennis at age 6 and Johnny took up his racket at age 4 and they plan on sticking with the sport for many years to come. They say their parents, Julie and Steve, are supportive of their craft and note that their younger brother Henry, 9, will be one to watch for on the tennis circuit.
“It’s demanding, both mentally and physically. Like life, it’s all about making important choices (on the court),” said Andrew, who noted that he’ll play college tennis.
Johnny said he likes putting in hard work to get good results.
Both boys are stellar students, with Johnny sporting a 3.975 grade-point average and Andrew notching a 3.8.
They’ve captured the spotlight in the classroom as well, to go along with the entertainment stage and the tennis court — just as they like it.