Hey there tennis fans!

            Moving right along into November, we are little over a month away from finishing the semester and our fall pre-season. We know in the academic world, this means lots of final projects, papers and tests to do. The stress load is inevitable. Lucky for us, when it comes to school, your Lady Lions will get our work done! Tennis has taught us so much discipline and we can definitely utilize that discipline in our schoolwork. After all, after last season, our team finished with the highest collaborative GPA among all the sports teams here at LMU. That is so awesome, and people might overlook how incredibly difficult that is to maintain good grades at a prestigious university while playing a Division I sport. We have some smart ladies upon us, and who are all driven to accomplish their goals in college as well as look beyond the future as far as careers go after college.

            We are finishing up our last few weeks of strength training with our strength and conditioning coach, Nick Longo. Although hesitant at first to start this brand new workout program, I have to say that I have really learned to like it as the weeks went on. I never thought I would be able to bench press 90 pounds. Sure that sounds scary but Nick reaffirmed to all of us that we are strong and can definitely handle it. And he knew to push us without leading us to injury. We would do few reps, with spotters in sight so that we were super careful with our weights. It's super important that the form is correct and that we are sticking to the weights to which we have been assigned and what Nick has done a great and meticulous job of putting together for our whole team. We're very lucky to have him! Going on three years with that guy, and I really have learned so much from him and he really cares about all the teams he coaches because he believes in us and wants us to do well and compete at the highest level.

            Two final tournaments took place this weekend. 3 girls competed at the Jack Kramer's Fall Invitational, Miya, Kristine and Jessica along with our Assistant coach, Ivan.  This was a big tournament because it welcomed the big top teams in California like UCLA, Stanford and others. Kristine and Jessica both won their first rounds with wins over Mississippi State and UCSB. Due to slight injuries, both girls had to pull out of their next round. With all of the tennis they have been playing it is likely to think somewhat of a setback of an injury might come into play. But they have done such a superb job competing this fall and could use a little break!  

            Miya, our lone senior for this weekend, competed in her final fall collegiate tournament, which she admits was bittersweet. "I loved playing my last tournament at my home tennis club," she said. As a Palos Verdes native, she admits, "It was awesome having that home court advantage but I didn't do as well as I had hoped which was pretty disappointing. 

           She got a bye first round but lost a tough match against a girl from Baylor. She had a great first round constellation win over TCU before falling a little short in a tight 3-setter against a girl from Ohio State. "It's crazy to think that was my last tournament ever, but I am so excited for spring to start!"

 Julia, Ellie and Lisa went separately down with Coach Jamie to San Diego to compete in the other tournament for the weekend. Ellie and Julia were victorious in the doubles draw with a final win over CSU Northridge! So big congrats to them!

            If you see any of your LMU Lady lions walking around campus, we would appreciate some love to all our hard work this pre-season. Although we are not technically in season, most of the tournaments we played in featured a lot of the West Coast Conference teams so we got a taste of our competition for the upcoming season and more.

            I want to give a special thanks to our coaches for being so supportive and putting up with us on the weekends for these tournaments. It isn't easy traveling with a bunch of girls, but our team has some goofy characters, so I would hardly say it is ever dull being around any of us!

That's all for now! Go Lions!








Hey there tennis fans!

            I hope you all enjoyed your Halloween weekend. Halloween came at a funky time this year and it even spread to two weekends long. How can people come up with so many costumes for two full weekends? My 21st birthday also happened to overlap with Halloween weekend 2 (this past weekend), so I couldn't tell if my birthday needed to be Halloween-oriented or not! It was a great weekend, nonetheless.

            The rest of the crew, 8 girls, headed down to Alabama for the Alberta Alison Fall Classic. It was quite the memorable trip to say the least. Just heading over to Alabama by plane was a giant production. There was a sudden change in the flight reservation which forced the team to leave a day earlier than intended and have to sit through major layovers in Houston before getting to the final destination. It was rough, and quality sleep did not seem to come into play for what seemed like a 24 hour traveling experience.

The team finally arrived in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. You can say that we were the only team from California.  We looked practically foreign to them. LMU is not to be confused with LSU! I know I seem to get that perplexed comments from people from time to time. The tournament welcomed big teams like Georgia Tech, Clemson, Vanderbilt, Michigan, LSU, Northwestern, UNC Greensborough, Furman, Mississippi State, Tulane and Alabama. Lots of team and lots of tennis.

Despite the tough competition among the likes of these teams, your lions rep'd LMU well, not going out there without a fight and with poise and pride. Special congrats to Lisa who played fiercely and reached the finals of her flight with wins over Tennessee and Tulane before falling to Georgia State. Kristine also made an impressive run and cruised to a back draw victory after a win over Northwestern and LSU in the finals. In the doubles action, Ellie and Miya reached the finals of their flight. Overall the weekend was a success and I am so proud of all my teammates for all their efforts this past weekend. They have been working so hard and it shows that they can compete against any team even outside the west coast bubble

The trip back home was once again, a big production. Somehow the Alabama airport shut down and your lions had to stay there for yet another day. Humor seemed to replace the frustration that everyone had with wanting to get home, back to Cali. The exhaustion they felt made everyone delusional. And they finally arrived back Monday morning. Despite the traveling mishaps and lots of airport lounging, these are the memories that our team takes with us for the rest of our lives.

This coming weekend, we have a tournament back in San Diego again, so wish us luck this week! 

That's all for now!


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Hey there tennis fans!

October is already coming to a close. Seriously, where does time go? That school and tennis grind really makes us lose track of days. We are feeling that light fall breeze start to kick in the air. The days have been warm, but right around 5 pm, it starts to get a little chilly. Even though we haven't been really used to putting on sweatshirts or throwing on sweat pants, due to the consistent warm temperatures, cold weather is creeping in whether we like it or not. It's important now that we stay warm after practice and put on our sweatshirts or pants after we finish. I've heard around school that people are starting to get sick, so we must make sure that we are staying away from that. Having been here for two years, I am well aware that LMU sicknesses spread like wildfire.

Our team meeting consisted of Coach Jamie's overall evaluation of our tournaments thus far. There is no denying that every member of our team is a feisty competitor and wants to win not only for themselves but also for the team as a whole. And that's great! That's what your fellow teammates and coaches like to see. However, it is never good to get too bottled up with the stats and results of a match. Winning essentially comes down to believing; believing deep down that nothing is going to come in the way of you and victory. Jamie mentioned that some of us get too caught up with winning, hitting the perfect shot, or a shot better or stronger than the opponent so you are statistically ahead in scoring which ultimately puts you in better position to win. Sure all of that is important to some degree. However, it is not nearly as important as first finding in yourself to believe that you can win. If you don't first believe in yourself, than what sord of motivation is going to help carry you through? This definitely struck a chord with me. Jamie is absolutely right, and I know I am definitely guilty for sometimes lacking a belief mechanism. It seems so simple, yet I think people look beyond it when they really should pay more attention to it.

With a weekend off of a tournament this past weekend, our team still can't get away from one another. We went to our usual team lunch spot, Panini, on Saturday after practice for a little bonding time. Every time my parents will come to town, I always make sure I take them to Panini. It is so good! And I honestly would never have discovered it Coach Jamie did not take us there originally. Our team has great chemistry as a whole and everyone contributes a unique personality to the team that is refreshing and never a dull moment to say the least. It was nice that we had the rest of the weekend off free of tough tennis match brawls. A little relaxation is always a good thing.

Next weekend, LMU Women's Tennis takes on the south! We are headed to Alabama for the Alberta Alison Fall Classic! It also happens to be Halloween weekend when the team heads over there. So it should be quite the road trip! Wish us ladies luck this week!

That's all for now!



Hey there tennis fans!

            Us Lions have been quite busy this past month. Intensive practices during the week sprinkled with a heavy school work load wipes us out! Yes, it's midterm season again, but then again, it feels like it's always midterm season! And I know I'm not alone in saying this! Because there is a tournament every weekend, it's important that we are on top of our workload during the week and coordinate with our teachers in terms of rescheduling tests or whanot.

            Being a student-athlete has really taught us to be proactive with everything we do whether it's getting to practice on time, eating and hydrating appropriately throughout the day, meeting with our professors during office hours if necessary, getting our homework done, and then squeezing some down time to ourselves because it is so important to take breaks because it seems that free time is limited. This week, I really found how valuable breaks really are.

            I had a really tough academic week last week with a ton of papers and a couple midterms that all seemed to pile all at once....typical. At every free second, Ihad when I wasn't in class or at tennis, I was doing my work. I didn't get enough sleep and was not taking care of my body. It hit me Thursday afternoon that I was completely exhausted and burnt out. My roommates approached me because they were somewhat worried about me because I seemed to look way too stressed out.  I realized I was so consumed with my work that I never gave myself "me" time to just sit down and relax a little bit.

I was so concerned I wasn't going to finish my work on time, but the truth of the matter is, by spending so much time doing all of my work, I never refreshed my brain to continue working. I was probably not as productive as I would have been if I took breaks. That was my big lesson of the week and from here on out, no matter how much work I know I have to do, I am going to make sure that I give myself some quality time to myself to just chill and not do anything. I will definitely be in better shape in the long run. Moral of the story, 'balance' is key especially when you are a collegiate athlete.

8 girls headed down to San Diego this weekend for Regionals at Barnes Tennis Center. Everyone put a lot of great efforts in practice during the week and they looked in great shape for competition this past weekend. This tournament format was different than the others in that there was one main draw for all the competitors and there was also a back draw. Three girls (Laura, Miya and Kristine) advanced to the Round of 32. Our very own freshmen superstar, Jessica did an amazing job this past weekend!  She reached the finals and lost a nail-biter match against UC Irvine's Kat Facey in the finals, 7-6. 7-6. We know there's only more great things to come from her! She really repped our school well and I am so honored to call her my teammate. We are all so proud of her!

That's all for now!



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Hey there tennis fans!

            We would be lying if we didn't say that our soreness has gotten the best of us. But in a great way... It's the type of soreness that we know we are getting stronger from and are really reaping the benefits from the weight room as well as on the court. By altering the weight program compared to previous years, I personally feel that more muscles are being worked and our bodies will be healthy and capable of tackling anything long term. We are lifting heavier than what we are typically used to as tennis players but we do them in small reps which is tolerable.

            Besides keeping our bodies athletic and strong at practice, another huge part about being an athlete that some people overlook sometimes is nutrition. Nutrition is so so key for providing us with fuel before and after workouts and as well as throughout the day. Nutrition can absolutely affect performance. You have to eat something that will give you enough energy to sustain through the duration of practice sessions, otherwise you will eventually fatigue. Coach Jamie does have us on those UCAN shakes, which we all are getting in a much better habit of using regularly.

In addition, we just had our first round of meetings with our nutritionist, Sarah. She is awesome! She actually trains Jamie when he hits the gym every morning at 5 AM....what a stud! We are so lucky to have Sarah. She will be a great resource and is really excited about getting us all on individual meal plan programs so we will never have to question what the appropriate thing to eat at certain times. She will put together something for us. We all made individual goals for ourselves and meeting with her frequently will be great so we can check in with her and discuss the progress we've been making week to week.

This past weekend in Moraga for the St. Mary's tournament, Reka, Eli, Miya and Jessica all played amazing tennis against top ranked schools such as Stanford, Washington, Cal as well as other fierce teams like Cal Poly, St. Mary's, Santa Clara and University of Pacific (who just joined our conference this year.) Special shoutout to Miya for reaching the finals of her division. She fought hard and had an awesome weekend!


This coming weekend is regional's at the Barnes Tennis Center in San Diego! Wish us girls luck this week! We'd really appreciate it!

That's all for now!






Hey there tennis fans!

            I hope you all enjoyed the warm weather this weekend! The fall months are vastly approaching, but the summer sun is still hanging around for a little longer. We have to take advantage of the nice temperatures as much as we can because yoga pants and uggs season is on its way!

            We were sad to hear that our pilates instructor, Roxanne (who's been our instructor since my freshmen year) is taking a leave of absence due to health reasons and should be expected to return next semester. For the returning players, this was sad news, because we have really established good relationships with her both on a personal level as well as in the yoga studio. She will be missed but we are optimistic about her return. In the meantime, we have a replacement instructor who is currently an LMU grad student and part time yoga instructor as well. She knows her stuff and is incredibly flexible. If only we were as incredibly flexible as she is...We are lucky she's so patient with us so we are attempting stretches correctly rather than running the risk of injuring ourselves.

            We finished our fourth and final week of our first circuit of weight training. Thank goodness, because those weights were getting heavy by that final week. Our strength coach, Nick, monitors our weight progression each week by recording what weights we started out with from week one to the final week. It's super important that we stick to the weights that are set for us individually because each person's set program varies slightly.

            Four of your lady lions traveled to Long Beach this past weekend for a tournament. It was definitely a major success! Every player went home with good wins. Miya Jin won her singles flight, Reka Rohonyi was a finalist in her flight, Kristine placed fourth in her flight and Laura Mueller placed third in her flight. Reka and Miya got third in their doubles division And Laura and Kristine won their doubles flight. I'm so proud of all the girls and this is a big confidence booster going forward with the tournaments ahead!

            This coming weekend, the girls will be heading up north to the bay area to compete in the St. Mary's tournament which is a big one with a lot of top name schools like Cal and Stanford so wish us ladies good luck if you see us around!

That's all for now!




Hey there tennis fans!

Six of your lady lions including myself headed down to San Diego for the weekend to compete in our first tournament of the fall season. For most, it was the very first tournament of their collegiate careers, which is very exciting. I, however, was the lone veteran. I am glad that I came with all the new girls so I could give them some insight of what typically happens during trips. Eat, lots of tennis, a little free time, eat, sleep and repeat. It's hard to believe that I was that same curious freshmen not too long ago. My assistant coach, Ivan jokes that I'm a grandma now because I know the in's and outs of our team adventures having been on the team for the past two years.

Weekend tournaments out of town are always a blast because well for one, our full school week gets cut short, which sometimes can be good or bad if it's at the expense of missing an important class. It seems that all the new girls were really excited to get away from the LMU bubble for a little bit especially because we have been really sucked into that school grind for a solid month of getting full adjusted and finishing up our first round of midterms. San Diego came at a perfect time to escape all the chaos and compete our hearts out on the tennis court in the blistering San Diego heat. But seriously, it was hot out there!

            The tournament consisted of one singles and one doubles match each day for a total of 6 matches. Pre match jitters were all the rage, but hey it's natural! Especially coming into our very first tournament of the year! Eli and Jessica won two out of their three doubles matches this weekend with huge wins over our rivals, Pepperdine and SDSU! They showed fearless efforts, great chemistry and were aggressive up at net, which helped them overcome those big battles. Jessica also clinched a win in singles against one of our other conference rivals, USD. The rest of the crew faced some tough losses against some top teams with very high quality tennis throughout the weekend.

The girls were a little butt-hurt with their results, but with my two-year experience, I tried to brighten their spirits a little and sprinkle some words of wisdom their way.  I let them know how talented they are to play for such a highly competitive DI team in addition to balancing a heavy and rigorous workload at school.  It's incredibly difficult to play a long weekend of matches factoring in all the exteriors like adjusting to college life, being away from home (which to many means in a different country altogether) schoolwork and other things circling around. If it was so easy to do, than everyone would do it. It takes major talent to be a collegiate athlete and this is just the beginning of the road. This is why we're getting the experience in now early on in the preseason so we can know what we need to work on and grow from there. This tournament is a starting point, a foundation for the tennis ahead of us, and we are ready.

            On a separate note, I wanted to give out a personal shout out to our former teammate and No. 1 player and not to mention, the most disciplined and dedicated person I know, April Bisharat. She came to visit us last week at practice and we talked about her growing interest in journalism. In fact, she already caught the blog bug and it would mean so much if you can spread some lion love and check out her blog she just started. I am one of the first proud readers to take a gander, and I must admit that I was totally inspired! Check it out when you get a chance!

            This weekend, the Lions have a tournament in Long Beach, so wish us luck if you seem some ladies rocking LMU Women's Tennis gear around.

Have a great week! That's all for now!




           Our first full week of organized practice means the return of our dedicated No. 1 fan and team mascot, Munchie. For those of you who are unfamiliar with Munchie, he is a squirrel that has absolutely no boundaries when it comes to digging through our backpacks in hopes of finding something to munch on. He is a smart little cookie and always knows whenever we bring nuts to the court. He must have a great nuts scent tracker.

            This year, he has taken up his aggressive mentality immensely. He is constantly on the prowl. We have to literally pry him off our belongings about every 15 minutes which really disrupts our practice flow. This is not good considering we just completed week one. We may have to take drastic measures to stop his chaotic behavior. Miya, one of my teammates, suggested we invest in some squirrel repellent! (if there is such a thing...) I'm thinking we may have to hide our backpacks somewhere he can't find them or find another place to put them where he can't get to them. Despite Munchie's crazy antics, he really is our most loyal fan, (I mean he does come out to the courts everyday...) so we don't want get rid of him for good!

            Everyone's glad that we are all into a regular routine now. It's unfortunate this semester that classes conflict a lot of practice times so adjustments have been made to accommodate everyone's schedule so we can all get our practice sessions in even if a lot of us are in and out throughout the week. At least it makes us realize that we need to really maximize our time out on the court as much as we can. Our coaches, Jamie and Ivan always say it's always better to have a hard-core and intense shorter practice than a longer sometimes dragged out practice.

            Jamie has got us back on the UCAN shake grind again. He is a big believer of the UCAN program because it's a great pre and post workout drink that is low in sugar and provides all the necessary nutrients in order for us sustain our energy level throughout the day. Mardy Fish is a proud promoter of this program, which is another added benefit. Personally, after being on this program for the past two years, I am all for it and actually have really grown to like the flavors of the shakes. It's also really nice to have because a lot of the times, as college students, we are constantly on the go. So most of the time after an intense workout session, we won't have time to eat 30-45 minutes after (which is super important) because we will have class or meetings or other obligations. Taking the shake is so easy in that we just have to mix the powder with water and we are good to go!

            Coming up this weekend, we have our first tournament at San Diego State! There will be four players going so they will get a lot of good tennis in. We will keep you posted with how they do next week!

That's all for now!



Hey there tennis fans!

            After 3 weeks of dragged-out fitness testing, we are finally done! Having "dragged-out" testing wasn't too bad though because it allowed us to gear up for each one appropriately instead of them piling up on each other all at once. It also helped us all get settled and adjusted to our classes. After all, we are "student athletes!" The school component is an equally large part of our LMU experience. And we are so fortunate to attend such a prestigious university that really dedicates their time to helping students best prepare themselves for the real world. I'd say, we have it pretty good here!

            8 am bright and early Saturday morning was our beloved beep test part 2. Thankfully, this time around didn't get stopped mid-way through forcing us to postpone the test for a later date. Everyone gave it their all and looked great especially for first thing in the morning! That test is not just a physical endurance test, but it's such a mental challenge as well because we have to run a certain distance in a certain amount of time, and that time is altered each time, forcing us to run faster and faster. It's tough. But we feel so great after it's over!

            And finishing stong in our final test, it called for a little celebration. The full team has yet to have a big gathering as a big group because some of us miss each other in the weight room or on the courts due to classes. So it was nice to organize a team gathering for dinner at my house close to campus for some much needed bonding time! We also invited the guys tennis team to join as well so both teams could get to know each other better. I'd say it was a success!

            As we get into this week, we are officially on our regular practice regime! We start on a strength program in the weight training room three times a week with our strength trainer, Nick. Then we have pilates, spin and SAQ (speed and agility on the court) all once a week, and finally, organized tennis practices.

Our coach, Jamie, really values community service. So in addition to our training, we put together tennis clinics with children at the LMU Daycare center. We work with 4 and 5 year olds. It's a nice break and a little stress reliever from school and intensive practice hours to spend some time with the kids and who knows, maybe get them hooked us on this little game we call tennis. It has begun! Get ready to work Lady Lions! It's going to be a great season!


That's all for now!


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Hey there tennis fans!           

     My name is Logan Finnell, and I am a current junior on the LMU Women's Tennis Team. This is my second year serving as the team weekly blogger. I am so excited to start this up again as I am a devoted player of the game as well as a passionate and aspiring sports journalist. I have had a wonderful experience thus far in my college tennis career, and I love to show fellow athletes, fans, family members and peers just what it is like to be a college tennis player in addition to keeping everyone up to date with our tennis and team adventures on and off the court.

     Fall pre-season commences with fresh new faces with even fiercer games. Saying goodbye to former lions is never easy, (especially since you are used to spending copious amount of time together on and off the court), however life must go on and we must continue the traditions that were instilled in us as passionate players with tons of lion pride.

     We have welcomed 5 new additions to the team this year who hail from a variety of different locations ranging from Germany to Sweden to Russia to Oregon as well as a somewhat local spot of Newport Beach. Right off the bat, our team chemistry was strong and everyone is getting along and well acquainted into their new environment of collegiate tennis here at LMU.

      Transitioning into college is no cakewalk, not to mention becoming a member of a Division I sports team at such a high level. I definitely have been there, and sure I had my challenges! But I am really impressed to the see the team's enthusiasm and willingness to work hard and enjoy their early experience along the way. It also helps that the veterans of the team are showing the new ladies the ropes especially when it is necessary for an understanding to the shenanigans that we start the year off with....the dreaded fitness testing.

      All summer, we are given time to train and prepare for the series of fitness testing that happily welcomes us back to school. The testing features a timed 2 mile run, another running test called the "beep" test which challenges our mental and physical endurance as well as an agility test. The tests continue in the weight room where Nick Longo, our strength and conditioning coach checks in to see if we have been keeping up with our weight program we were assigned in the summer time. He even threw in a bench press test, which is new for the tennis team since we have never done it before, but Nick was confident in our strengths that we could handle it. And hey, he was right.

     Everyone challenged themselves to the best of their abilities, and it was evident that we impressed the big guy. Unfortunately our testing has dragged out a little longer than we hoped. We had a minor malfunction with the beep test last week and we must re-do it on Tuesday. Once that wraps up, the Lions will be ready to get into our regular practice routine and the weekend tournaments will start. 

    I hope you all had a wonderful summer and you are all getting excited to hear about your LMU Women's Tennis Team kick some lion butt this year!

That's all for now!