With nine returning members and a total team of 12, this is one of the smallest teams women’s tennis has seen in a few years.
“Typically we have two teams, but we didn’t have enough members this year to split in two,” sophomore Katie Krieger said. “It’s nice to have everyone on one team, practicing together, because we can see each other play and grow as a team.”
In the past, red and purple teams have divided competing and non-competing members. However, with the smaller numbers this year, a combined team has allowed all members the opportunity to compete.
“With a smaller team, we can get more individual attention from our coaches and improve as players,” Jernstedt said in praise of her team.
With two coaches, head coach Amy Dames Smith and assistant coach Brint Kingzett, the players will certainly get the support they desire.
“We have two amazing coaches. They’re both really helpful and have definitely led to my improvement these past two years,” Krieger said.
With one player back from an injury and another cleared after suffering from bronchitis, this weekend looks like it could turn out to be the comeback the Wildcats need to propel them toward the league championship.
The team fought for its first wins while at home Feb. 23 and 24. The Wildcats defeated Whitworth University, 5-4 on Feb. 24 and George Fox University 7-2 on Feb. 23.
Women’s tennis hosted Pacific Lutheran University in its second league match of the season Feb. 15. A close loss at 4-5 marks a rocky season for the experienced team. This fourth match of the season is its fourth consecutive loss.
Even so, there is still hope that the season will turn around soon.
“Our first two matches [against Portland State and Santa Cruz] don’t count toward our league championship chances so there is still time to improve and have a great season,” sophomore Gretchen Jernstedt said.
Olivia Marovich/ Staff writer
Olvia Marovich can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.