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September 2016 Archives

FIRST TOURNAMENT OF THE FALL SEASON

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Hey there Lions fans!

Today your Lady Lions are hitting the road for our first tournament!  Four of us will be competing this weekend in San Diego at San Diego State University. After all this training we've been doing, we're really excited to finally compete! I've played this tournament every year since my freshman year, and it's a little emotional that this is my last Fall season but I'm going to make the best of it. 

This week we've been doing a lot of match and point play to prepare for this weekend. Agustin has been emphasizing to us how important it is to play high percentages in these tournaments. Especially in the first few matches it's natural to feel a little nerves, it's just the way players deal with them that makes players tougher than others. It's part of sports to feel nervous or tight sometimes, but we have to learn to accept it and get passed it. It's also a good thing to remember that your opponent is most likely experiencing the same nerves as well, or maybe even more. This is what makes tennis so mental. Sometimes it's not about the kind of strokes or power you have, you can break your opponent down mentally as well. If your opponent sees you're never giving up and you're going to do whatever it takes to stay in the point, they're probably going to experience more nerves and eventually break down. College tennis is such a mental game and I've learned that it's the mentally tough ones who know how to break their opponents down are the ones that are the toughest.

We've been training so hard the past few weeks and I can see we're all ready to compete this weekend. I'm excited to see the beginning of what this squad can do this year!

GO LIONS

Jessica

LADY LIONS GEARING UP FOR THE FALL SEASON

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Hey there Lion fans!

It's been a tough week for your Lady Lions. This is our first week of our full training schedule, and Agustin and Katie have us working hard! Even though we're experiencing some soreness from the rigorous training, we are still dedicated to giving all we got every day whether it be on the court, in the weight room or on the field running sprints. Fall season is really a time for us to get in shape and really work on things individually and as a team. What I've learned from each year is that the way you train in the fall really sets up and prepares you for the spring. We have a tough training schedule and tough tournaments we're playing this fall, but I can see that each one of us is trying their best every day no matter what amount of soreness or fatigue we have. It's such an awesome atmosphere to be around when you have a squad that's constantly cheering you on in the tough drills or when you're pushing at that last rep of bench in the weight room. It truly is a great feeling.

With fall season just around the corner, we've been slowly working our way into match play in both singles and doubles. Although it's tough to play your own teammate, we all understand it's a part of the game and it's all a choice we've made to play it. We're all such great competitors with so much drive and it's a great thing to see in a tennis team. Everyone knows that playing against one another will only make us that much tougher for the spring when we compete together as a team.

This week at practice, Agustin and Katie emphasized that we're not always going to feel 100% in every match we play. There's only a few matches a year (if you're lucky) that you play a match where everything feels good. Whether your first serve, second serve or forehand is off we have to find a way to deal with it. Agustin said "sometimes you have to win ugly." When something isn't working we have to find a way to shift our mindset to finding a way instead of focusing on what's not working. It's a really hard thing to do, and that's what makes this sport so tough mentally and physically. We have to find a way to grind it out in these situations, and it only makes us that much tougher.

With the first tournament less than two weeks away, we are working harder every day. With the way this squad is training, I can sense we're going to have a great outcome this fall season!

GO LIONS

Jessica

HAVE TO OR WANT TO

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Hey there Lion fans!

This is the last 8 hour week for your Lady Lions. Next week we're going full speed and start our 20 hours of training! Even though we haven't had a lot of training time with the coaches or as a team, that's not stopping this hard working squad. All of us have been out on the courts hitting on our own almost every day hitting with one another. It's so motivating to have teammates that are so self motivated, especially the freshmen. We all know how hard of an adjustment it is when you first come to college, but I'm so impressed with our freshmen. They are adjusting so well and so self motivated to practice and train. As a senior, it's really a great thing to see the younger teammates so motivated and willing to work hard, so props to the freshmen!

We are only 2 weeks away from our first tournament, which is the beginning of our preseason! Even though we've had limited hours, Agustin and Katie have really been getting us ready fitness wise. I have to admit we're all pretty sore these days, but we know it's going to be worth it in the end. Our weights trainer, Jack gave us new training shirts this week and on the back it says "have to or want to." Sure we have to be at practice and be at weights when we're told to, but your mindset going in can really make a difference  in your performance . If we go into a practice or weights wanting to be there and ready to get better it can really change the outcome. It's really important for this squad to have a good mindset during practices and training this year because we have so much talent and potential to do well this year. It's hard not to have this mindset sometimes when you're a college athlete because we all know things happen that are out of our control whether it be school or other issues. That's one of the challenges of being a D1 college athlete, we have to learn to balance a lot of different things including mindsets. It's not a bad thing though, it's something we should embrace because not many people can do what we can do. I have so much confidence in this team that we can have the right mindset this year. I already see it in each one of them and I know we're going to strive to get better every day this year.

That's all for now tennis fans!

Jessica

LADY LIONS ARE BACK IN ACTION WITH SOME NEW TALENT

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Hey there Lion fans!

After this long summer, school is officially back in session! That means new school year, new classes and new teammates. This is pretty much a brand new year for your Lady Lions. We have four new freshmen, which means almost half of the team is new! We have Cami from Argentina, Vony from Australia, Caisey-Lee from Ventura and Siena from Orange County, which is where I'm from as well! All of these players come from awesome backgrounds and are ready to work. My teammates and I were excited to welcome them to the squad! This past week, we've been doing a lot of team bonding to get to know each other and everything. So far the team has had awesome chemistry and each one of us is so motivated and excited for this year!

We started off the first week with the brutal fitness testing. This testing includes a running test and different tests in the weight room our fitness trainer Jack tests us on. I thought we all did pretty well in all the testing, but we are always striving to get better. We are always looking to improve our scores and results. Agustin and Katie firmly believe we have so much talent and so much potential this year. They always emphasize that we always have to strive to be better and know we can do better.

We are currently on eight hour weeks, which means we can only do eight hours of training as a team per week. Even though we aren't doing as much team training with the coaches we still motivate each other to train on our own before the full practice schedule starts. It's awesome when I see my phone light up and it's my teammates asking who wants to practice. When I see a team constantly motivated like that and always looking to get better it motivates me to want to get better and go that extra mile.  I'm still in denial that I'm a senior, but I'm excited for what this team can do this season and the potential we have. Even though it's only the second week of school, I already see great team unity and culture developing in this team and it's really exciting!

That's all for now tennis fans!

GO LIONS

Jessica