Category: Tennis

Tennis teams take the court

KAT PUDUCAY
Staff Writer

The 2014 tennis season is in full swing. Both the men and women’s teams have been preparing for this spring season.
Head Coach Darryl Cummings, born and raised in Virginia Beach, has returned to Virginia Wesleyan after a decade of coaching at Old Dominion University. Having years of collegiate coaching experience, Cummings has been confidently training his players for the upcoming season.
“In the fall, we had two to three tournaments that provided competitive opportunities,” he said. “It gave the coaches and players good feedback on how to develop their games.”
In addition to team training, many players pursued individual improvement during their school breaks.
Sophomore Mia Proctor prepared for the fall and upcoming season by playing and teaching tennis during the summer.
“This helped me understand what I had to work on,” said Proctor. “I also tried to work on my mental game and understand that anyone on any day can win the match.”
Fellow sophomore player Graham Wilson prepared for the upcoming season by training over winter break, meeting with his personal trainers three times a week.
“This season I plan on trying to improve my record from last year to go as far as I can and hopefully make it to nationals in May,” Wilson said.
Proctor’s goals for this season are being a leader and making sure everyone is trying their best on the court, while Wilson hopes the team’s training will lead them to a win at the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) championship.
One of the most exciting aspects of the players’ training takes place during spring break. Both teams will travel to Florida over break to enhance their understanding of the game and become closer as a team. The trip will begin in Orlando where players will be matched against Knox College and Otterbein University.
“I am really looking forward to the trip because it will give good training opportunities,” Cummings said.
Next, the teams will attend a pro tournament in Miami where they’ll observe the highest level of play, and train at IMG Academy in Bradenton, where famous tennis players like Venus and Serena Williams, Maria Sharapova and Andre Agassi are alumni and trainees.
“I’m expecting the team to do well during the season and to really understand what it means to be a team,” Proctor said.
Players are working extremely hard to cooperate as a team and are confident that their training can lead to championships.
“This season, the men have the chance to compete for a conference championship and the women’s have a chance to be at the top five this season,” said Cummings confidently.
The 2014 tennis season is nearly in full swing. Both the men and women’s teams have been preparing for this Spring season.
Head Coach Darryl Cummings, born and raised in Virginia Beach, has returned to Virginia Wesleyan after a decade of coaching at Old Dominion University. Having years of collegiate coaching experience, Cummings has been confidently training his players for the upcoming season.
“In the fall, we had two to three tournaments that provided competitive opportunities,” he said. “It gave the coaches and players good feedback on how to develop their games.”
In addition to team training, many players pursued individual improvement during their school breaks.
Sophomore Mia Proctor prepared for the fall and upcoming season by playing and teaching tennis during the summer.
“This helped me understand what I had to work on,” Proctor said. “I also tried to work on my mental game and under that anyone on any day can win the match.”
Fellow sophomore player Graham Wilson prepared for the upcoming season by training over winter break and meeting with his personal trainers three times a week at Tidewater Performance in Newport News.
“This season I plan on trying to improve my record from last year to go as far as I can and hopefully make it to nationals in May,” Wilson said.
Proctor’s goals for this season is being a leader and making sure everyone is trying their best on the court, while Wilson hopes the team’s training will lead them to a win at the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) championship.
One of the most exciting aspects of the players’ training takes place during Spring Break. Both teams will travel to Florida over break to enhance their understanding of the game and become closer as a team. The trip will begin in Orlando where players will be matched by teams … (play a couple of teams.)
“I am really looking forward to the trip because it will give good training opportunities,” Cummings said.
Next, the teams will attend a pro tournament in Miami where they’ll observe the highest level playing and train at IMG Academy in Bradenton, where famous tennis players like Venus and Serena Williams, Maria Sharapova and Andre Agassi are alumni and trainees.
“I’m expecting the team to do well during the season and to really understand what it means to be a team,” Proctor said.
Players are working extremely hard to cooperate as a team and are confident that their training can lead to championships.
Cummings stated confidently, “This season, the men have the chance to compete for a conference championship and the women’s have a chance to be at the top 5 this season.”

Freshmen girls plan to make a comeback

Bre Muir
Sports Editor

As the underdogs of every match during their 2012 season, the Marlins finished with an overall record of 3-15 and an Old Dominion Athletic Conference record of 2-8.
“Last season we had five girls and during every match we would be down 0 to 2 automatically because our roster wasn’t big enough,” said senior Stephanie Bittner.
This season promises change according to the 2013 ODAC preseason poll, in which the team is ranked second behind the Washington & Lee Generals.
“I think Washington & Lee is our biggest competition because they have very talented and strong players with experience and a big line-up,” Bittner said.
While the Generals have 16 players to fill their roster that average two and a half years playing experience underneath their belts, the Marlins only have two returning players from last season. Bittner will be returning along with sophomore Hannah Rice.
“Last season was really tough because we always started each match from behind, but our coach this season has done a really good job recruiting a full roster of girls,” Bittner said.
Seven freshmen fill the remainder of the spring roster.
Freshman Lauren Brooker from Wake Forest, N.C. has played tennis since she was six and was practically born on a tennis court.

“Ever since I was two years old, I was in a basket of balls on a tennis court with coaches,” said Brooker.

Brooker hopes to have a perfect season, but values bonding with her teammates even more.
“Having a team bond is the most important aspect to me,” Brooker said. “The more of a family the team is, the better we will perform in the season.”
The new blood began to show their skill during the fall semester. Freshman Mia Proctor won the conso crown in the ITA Southeast Regional. Brooker and fellow freshman Sara Yousif shared in the success by making it to the Championship Flight in singles and doubles.
Along with others on the team, Brooker has high expectations for her teammates and for her first season as a Marlin.
“My expectation for the season is to have each and every one of us perform to our highest standards and to fight for every match we play,” Brooker said.
The first home match this semester is on March 2 at 2 p.m. on the Everett Tennis Center against the Methodist University Monarchs.