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Archive for March, 2010

We had a very busy weekend that started with a Thursday night departure for Fredericksburg, VA for the Fab 5 tournament. Along the way, we stopped at Mellow Mushroom in Charlottesville for some carb-loading, but unfortunately we didn’t end up ordering enough and were starving for the rest of the road trip. Bummer- next time, we’ll know. Below, you can see a photo we had a kind gentleman take of us at the Mushroom. There’s a slight reflection that we can’t explain, but it seems to be emanating from the front left corner of the shot.

Mellow Mushroom

Usually, these trips are a musical extravaganza, but we only brought Eric’s screwed up iPod adapter and so we were left with the two CDs Elliott had coincidentally brought along. Knowing Elliott’s track record with the tunes, we were a little nervous, but man did he deliver. I have downloaded so much 2Pac and Dr. Dre as a result of this trip, that it is unbelievable. Blair is now obsessed with Lil Wayne. We all learned something new about the hip-hop/rap genre this trip, so props to Elliott for the enlightening experience. Everyone besides JPac (aka Jen Snyder) who was already extremely well versed in all things rap. The highlight of his musical contributions for the weekend is a little ditty called “You Know My Name” by a little known (to most normal people) artist called SPM–look him up yourself. Sketchy guy. Anyway, this song became the anthem of our Fab 5 trip and will forever be a part of my W&L tennis memories. I CANNOT BELIEVE this song never made it to the top of the charts! There is no justice in the world!!

We were soooooo sooooo excited to see the alumni who came to Fredericksburg for our Emory match on Saturday. They were all way too sweet to make the trip to see us and cheer us on. It was such a nice feeling to have their support during the tough match!  Thanks to everyone who came: Leah, Emily, Becca, Patty, Ginny, Meg, Katie Duncan, Kelly Will – you guys are the best!  Know what would make you even better?  If those of you who haven’t would please send us your alumni profiles.  Now that this entry has given you a taste of the excitement of internet fame, you should be anxious to have an entry on our blog that is all about YOU. Just do it.

Peanut Gallery

Our trip even included a special trip to Target so we could pick up a few needed items: vegetable steamer, 7th Generation Laundry Detergent, Clif Bars, Vitamin Water, no sweets or chocolate of any kind, clothes.  Overall it was a very successful trip.

Jen, Ellen, Sallie, ever catch those annoying people who kept knocking on your door?  That was so weird…

GET ITTTTT Jen

UN-Fancy Dress

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A Wild Weekend

Hello Generals tennis fans… I decided to pop in here and give a quick post, because otherwise I didn’t think our team would get the right amount of props. Before we left for the “Fab 5″ tournament we had a tough match against one of the top teams in the country, Chicago. After Chicago we would play nationally ranked teams Skidmore, Emory, and Johns Hopkins. By the way, this is Elliott Datlow (Assistant Coach).

Chicago

We had previously lost to Chicago at the ITA National Indoors by a score of 5-4. For us that match had an asterisk next to it, and we were more than ready for another crack at them. For starters we were missing one of our top players in singles and doubles.

To start the match, Lauren Caire and Ellen Yeatman pulled off a great win over at number 2 doubles. Everyone played incredibly hard, and Coach Ishida and I commented in the middle of the match how we were proud of the Lady Generals.Ellen  went on to defeat one of the top girls in the country at #2 singles in straight sets.  Trailing 4-3, we had Caire and Brzeski still on the court. Lauren Caire was in a 3rd set tiebreaker with one of the very  top women in Division 3 and Brzeski was up a set and 5-0. Lauren fought hard and played unquestionably her best match thus far,  but lost 11-9 in the final set breaker. Blair reeled  in her win.

As you can see I get wordy with my stories! I will let the team comment on the Fab 5 matches. I will just say that our team played very well and has continued to improve with every match. We defeated a hungry Skidmore team who started out sharp by taking us out at #1 doubles. We then finally got our revenge against Emory. Emory is ranked #2 in the country now and was one of two teams to beat us last year (defeating us once in the season and also at the NCAA tournament). Lauren Caire defeated the defending NCAA Singles Champion, and Ellen defeated a young lady who had beaten her last year at NCAA’s. It all came down to Lauren Lukas who came back from a set down to beat someone who is arguably the best #4 player in the country. Lukas won the deciding match.

Our last opponent was John Hopkins on Sunday. We had defeated JHU 9-0 at the ITA National Indoors. Eric and I have felt like the score was incredibly deceiving as we had 3 three set matches, and some of our straight set victories were “perfect matches.” We had no doubts that Johns Hopkins was/is good. We knew it would be a tough match, our challenge as coaches was to make sure that the team would “buy-in” to what we were saying. It seemed like they did. We jumped up to a 3-0 lead after doubles. But then we went into a drought.  We lost at numbers 1,2,3 and 5 before we had secured another point (and only winning 1 set). Trailing by a score of 4-3, we were down to both remaining matches in a third set. Lauren Lukas picked up where she had left off against Emory sticking some amazing volleys, hammering her serve,  and nailing overheads on her way to a 7-6 in the third set victory.

And then there was Blair Brzeski. The last match on. Blair was all business jumping to a 6-0 lead, then fell in the second set. She continued the fall while going down 4-2, 40-15 in the third set. And then like a light switch —her volleys and overheads were spot on and made net play look easy! With all eyes on the senior captain, she gutted out long and stressful games… and  the match for the team, 6-4 in the third set.

I’m sure that I will not get invited back to blog because of the length of my writing. But my team knows I have a lot to say and now I feel like someone is listening! Bottom line is we “toughed out” out 2 nail-biters this weekend. I definitely think that losing the close match to Chicago helped put us in a position to win close matches against the nations best teams.

After Lauren's 3rd Set Victory Against Emory

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Get It Generals

The marathon week of matches has come to a close.  6 matches.  4 days.  No losses.  It doesn’t get much better than that!  We dropped only 1 point out of 54 and Virginia got the oh-so coveted golden set!  The sun was out for 5 days in a row which was much appreciated after a never-ending snow filled winter, and we got to break in the outdoor courts.  Life as a w&l tennis player is good, maybe not as good for the coaches who had to listen to more Ke$ha than they probably wanted (even though we know they secretly like her insightful lyrics and hope she is not a 1 hit wonder).

And as always, the highlight of away matches was the food outside Lexington.  After Bridgewater, Elliott was nice enough to indulge our health food cravings and took us to 5 guys for veggie wraps and Cajun flavored potato slices.  We had lots of options, seeing as there are over 250,000 possible ways to order a burger (and by burger I mean veggie wrap) at Five Guys.  Beats Sheetz any day.  Good spotting Elliot, 5 Guys is way better than Quiznos.  And not that I looked it up or anything, but you were right, per usual.  It was founded by 5 guys, but you did not specify that it was 4 sons and a father.

Thanks to our coaches and juniors who helped put together senior day for our last regular season ODAC match.  We felt very appreciated and Dorsey even got a little sentimental.  And thanks to Dr. Pleva for his wonderful coaching and delicious desserts!

Looking forward we have a big two weeks ahead of us.  Chicago on Wednesday and the Fab 5 Tournament this weekend, followed by Williams next Thursday.  Get excited!  We can’t wait to see all our fans cheering us on! As a reminder (the non-running kind), look for the super cool ad Katie Harris and I made for the flat screens in the commons.  Watch out Jen Snyder, you are going to be famous.

Seniors

Thanks for the flowers

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It’s that time you have all been waiting for.  Celebrity Playlist: Team Edition.  The endless snow has finally melted.  The sun is shining.  Spring is here.  Get pumped!

Alpha Beta Gaga (Mark Ronson Remix) by Air & Rhymefest – There is nothing I love more than an upbeat rap to get me pumped up for a match.  Paired with my favorite Air song and Rhymefest’s rhyming skills, this track is a winning combination – Blair

Heads Will Roll by The Yeah Yeah Yeahs – Not only is it a great pump up song, but the video is awesome too. It features a werewolf dancing like Michael Jackson on a light up floor. WAY COOL – Lauren Caire

Ridin Solo by Jason Derulo – This song puts me in the best mood and gets me pumped up to play a match – Lauren Dorsey

Ridin Solo by Jason Derulo – It’s catchy, and I know almost all of the words (rare occurrence for me) – Katie

I Just Haven’t Found You Yet by Michael Buble -Because one day I will find a boyfriend haha – Lyndsey

Like a g6 by Far East Movement – Virginia Dickinson

I Gotta Feeling by the Black Eyed Peas -It makes me feel good and get a good rhythm while I’m hitting. It’s catchy and I find it makes my feet move more than Eric telling me to move them- Catherine

Little Secrets by Passion Pit – I choose little secrets because I like to keep little secrets – Ashley

Always Strapped by Birdman & Lil Wayne – This song really brings out my business walk – Lauren Lukas

Ice Cream Paint Job by Dorrough – Because ice cream is my most favorite thing in the world and the fact that it was so eloquently incorporated into a song just makes me happy. Its the best of both worlds kinda like Miley Cyrus and Hannah Montana – Laura Pattillo

Human by The Killers – Because sometimes all you can do is, “close your eyes, clear your heart, and cut the cord.” – Ann

Dark Hotel by K.S. Rhoads – Because I can’t get it out of my head and of course because Blair recommended it – Trelsie

Ridin Solo by Jason Derulo – This song makes me feel good about ridin solo. I listened to it over 10 times on Valentine’s Day. I even play it in my head when I play matches and need something to calm me down. It is overall a great song. I actually wanted this to be my ringtone before “Hey, Soul Sister”, however it is not avaliable yet – Jen Snyder

Dani California by Red Hot Chilli Peppers – Because they are tha bomb.com and i would sacrifice a finger to see them in concert – Ellen

Love Me by Justin Bieber – Because it’s really catchy and I love Justin Beiber!! – Kerry

Break Your Heart by Taio Cruz – Because its so upbeat and fun to sing! – Christina

Invisible Touch by Phil Collins – Because if liking Phil Collins is wrong, I don’t want to be right – Sallie

Confessions/It’s My Life mash-up from Glee – I really like the Glee soundtrack, so I guess this is a good one.  Plus Finn is attractive – Elise

Shark in the Water by V.V. Brown – …….It makes me want to dance….oh lord… – Laura Simmons

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Featured next in our “Where Are They Now” section we have the GREAT Ginny Wortham!

What have you been doing since graduation?

I have been living and working in Richmond at an investment firm. I am currently working as a sales assistant and I love what I do and where I work. I am also still playing lots of tennis and am involved in the tennis community in Richmond.

What is the coolest thing you’ve done since graduating?

I went on a two week European trip right after graduation to Paris, Nice, the Cinque-Terra, Florence, Venice, and Rome. My favorite part of the trip was hiking the Cinque-Terra- I would go back tomorrow if I could.

The coolest tennis thing I did was play a tournament in Indian Wells, CA at the same place where they play one of the ATP Events. It was by far the most beautiful place I have ever played tennis.

Do you remember your animal?

I was a mouse. I don’t know if I have anything else to say about that.

What is your favorite tennis memory at W&L?

May 17, 2007 – winning the National Championship. What an amazing day. “A day that will rank up there with weddings and birth of children.” It was the perfect ending to an incredible 4 years of W&L tennis.

Any advice for current players?

FAWTW – Find A Way To Win. My favorite expression probably graduated with me, but I hope that its legacy lives on with the program. Don’t leave anything on the tennis court. Change your strategy, fight, and keep trying to figure out how to win the match. You only get to play college tennis once. Enjoy the matches. Enjoy being a part of a team. Enjoy going to practice. Enjoy hanging out with your teammates on and off the court.

What is your favorite pump-up song?

At W&L, it was whatever happened to come on someone’s Ipod on the court or on the bus before a match.  “Glamorous,” “Let’s Go” and “Till I Collapse” were a few that I remember pumping me up.  Now, it’s some combination of Journey, Dave Matthews Band, Sugarland, Zac Brown Band, or even something off of the Glee Soundtrack. I know that’s a pretty wide range, but I can tell it’s going to be a good day or a good match or a good run if I hear something by one of those groups.


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Finally, our first Where Are They Now post. First featured graduate of the W&L Women’s Tennis Team is Leah Weston: she’s funny, she’s smart, she’s athletic, she’s talented…give it up for the best warrior cry specialist in the Northern hemisphere!!!

What have you been doing since graduation?

Not playing tennis.  Just kidding.

I have been living in Colorado, skiing and hiking in the beautiful Rockies and begging people from W&L to come visit me!!  I found an excuse to keep training and ran my first 1/2 marathon.

I have been working for an awesome company (Action Marketing Group) that has allowed me to throw events for people, hand out LUNA Bars and Starbucks Energy Drinks, dress up as the Chelsea Football Club mascot in Dallas Stadium and promote a new car by Ford…I love my job!!

What is the coolest thing you’ve done since graduating?

I spent 10 days in Japan!!!  We saw Tokyo, Kyoto, Kanazawa, Okayama and Miyajima Island.  I tried about 8 different flavors of Kit Kats and have never had so many noodles and rice in my life (except for maybe when I traveled with the team….we ate A LOT….ALWAYS).

Do you remember your animal?

How could I forget?!?!?!?   I was a freakin BAT!  Please see the two attached pictures and tell me how it is even possible that I became the bat on the tennis team.  I just don’t see the resemblance =)

What is your favorite tennis memory at W&L?

It starts with an N and ends with a mpions.  National Champions 2007 baby!!  That topped it off but there were so many wonderful memories before and after that….

Games of catch phrase in the beach house in Charleston, long (but fun) rides on charter buses…, Caire singing Blackbird to us before our ODAC matches, challenge matches (NOT), making that silly video where we all danced out of the bus, laughing so hard at our craziness that I cried…So many amazing memories!!

Any advice for current players?

Enjoy eachothers company! Enjoy conditioning…some day you are going to wish you had a set workout schedule and someone willing to work you into the ground everyday (it sounds crazy I know but it is true).

It’s cliche but Love the Battle!!  You won’t remember the easy wins but you will remember ever match you had to work for.

What is your favorite pump-up song?

Hmmmmm… lets go with a couple of throw backs:
1. Lets Go – (Kristen McClung LOVED this one)
2. Hustlin – Rick Ross (F*bombs always manage to be a good source of “pump up”)
3. Glamorous – Fergie (It lead us to #1 and was the song we played for our victory lap in the ghetto W&L van)
4. We Takin’ Over – for some reason this was my go to pump up song before matches one year

I miss everyone so much!!  The team helped me meet some of my best friends in the world!

Bat-like?

Leah-like?

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Birthdays on the W&L Women’s Tennis Team are a thing of legend and Elliott’s birthday was nothing short of this tradition. After the Sweet Briar match on Saturday, Elliott found his desk to be decorated with loads of Taco Bell, gummy bears galore, and an expertly decorated (shout out to Reed’s close friend Clint) cookie cake. There were candles, there was singing, and most of all…there were smiles!

Happy Birthday, Elliott!

On this day, Elliott was RIGHT about everything.

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