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TOURNAMENT FREE

Hey there tennis fans!

Inside, we lady lions are fist pumping to the fact that we are "tournament-free" from now until the end of the semester...which is what, 3 weeks or so? I know the workload is getting the absolute best of us with end of the semester group projects, papers, exams...It all seems never-ending. But with such a short semester left, we know we have to put our school games on over-drive. It's ultimate crunch time. And it's nice that we can utilize the remaining weekends (free of tennis) to stay on top of our work.

According to our 8 hour a week schedules, tennis is still set twice a week along with weights. We do have spin and pilates thrown in there as well. All of our regular activities are still in place but the tennis time is cut down. So with that limited time, my team and I make sure that we maximize our time and keep our focus on the court.

We made a team trip to the basketball game on Friday in their second game of the season as well as the final soccer game of the season on Saturday! Both teams played great and the Lions got a pair of wins back-to-back. I am super happy that our lions have made the efforts to support other lions because that's the LMU athletic community is all about. We're all a big family.

Countdown: 9 days until a little half-week break for thanksgiving. It will be nice go home and be with our families or just to breakaway from school (for those who are international and can't go home) and come back refreshed for the homestretch until finals and then our big holiday break. One day at a time. It's going to fly by so fast and we won't even know it

That's all for now. GO LIONS!

Logan

FALL TOURNAMENTS COMMENCE IN SAN DIEGO

Hey there tennis fans!

Our fall season is complete! Well as far as competition goes. Four of your Lady Lions (Julia, Audrey, Kylie and Anna) went to San Diego once again for our final tournament, the SDSU Fall Classic II. Among our team included Denver, Air Force, UC Irvine, Stanford, Missouri, Washington, UTEP, UC Santa Barbara and San Diego.

After having won a tournament this fall, Anna (one of our freshmen) reached her second final in her bracket against Missouri, which is so awesome! We all know as freshmen, it is quite a tough transition from junior tennis into high level DI college tennis. Anna has such an even-keeled aura on the court and always handles her body language and composure so well and maturely. That is so impressive for someone her age and I know we will be seeing great things to come from her as she continues her college career. And I am speaking as someone who has grown up playing with her. Her game has truly blossomed!

In addition to Anna's success in the tournament, Julia reached the back draw finals.. As a dubs team, Anna and Julia also reached the back draw finals! Kylie and Audrey won their doubles match on Sunday as well. And Kylie won her singles match on Sunday.

Three of the Lions who did not play in the tournament this weekend, (Lisa, Ellie and myself) participated in what is called an Electric Run. For those of you who are familiar with the 'Color Run,' it is very similar. It was a 5k (3 mile race) that took place on Saturday at Dodger Stadium. The running route was in the parking lot around the stadium. Here's the twist: the run was at 7 at night and was neon and glow themed. So Ellie, Lisa and I dressed up in white tops and neon tutus covered in glow necklaces and bracelets so we could 'light up' the path we ran! It was an absolute blast!

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The trail was all lit by fun bright colors and people got really into their costumes. We would see a lot of people with strings of actual lights looped around their bodies. It was impressive.

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 Next semester, we are hoping to round our whole team up to sign up for another run similar to that, possibly the color run because we know that's another fun and popular one to do!

As our tennis competition wraps up for the year, we head back into eight-hour weeks so we are cutting down on our practice time. I know a lot of us are a little relieved to hear that because these last few weeks of school before thanksgiving break gets extremely hectic with final papers/midterms/group projects. 

And then of course it is only week after thanksgiving break that we have to prepare for finals. Yikes! So it is very important that all of us stay on top of our studies with a little pressure off the tennis rigor.

As this semester wraps up, I am trying to encourage my teammates to attend some of the remaining conference games for all the sports teams like men's and women's soccer and water polo. We really try to encourage "lions supporting lions" as we are a tight-knit community at LMU. 

Basketball is also just starting up and there looks to be a brand new squad and a brand new coach, so I know I can count on my team to make it out to some games. For me and Lisa, Madison and Ana Lucia, especially as seniors, we want to try to go to as many games as possible because this is the last real semester and a quarter that we are a part of the LMU sports community.

That's all for now! GO LIONS!

Logan

THE LIONS GET A SOUTHERN FIX IN ALABAMA

Hey there tennis fans!

Three of the Lions competed in the Jack Kramer's tournament (Jessica, Laura and Kristine) with some of the top teams on the west coast including UCLA, USC, SMU, Pepperdine, LSU, Stanford, Ohio State, BU and others. Laura and Jess had a huge first round win in doubles but the singles matches were super tough as these players are some of the best in the country. Kristine won her first round against UCSB but lost her second round. I'm super proud of everyone for giving it their all though.

About that Southern fix, Yes, you heard right. ¾ of the LMU Women's Tennis team (Ellie, Julia, Lisa, Anna, Kylie, Andy, Audrey and myself) headed to the south, Tuscaloosa, Alabama to be exact for the Roberta Allison Fall Classic. This is the second year in a row that our team has been asked to attend this event along with tons of competitive teams from the south and the Midwest. The battles were certainly unlike any competition we have faced in the past or will face in our conference matches. These teams include, Alabama, Ole Miss, Mississippi State, Georgetown, Michigan, LSU, Georgia Tech, Depaul, as well as some feisty smaller private schools in the south that I had never heard before such as Troy, UAB, and Middle Tennessee University.

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A lot of these schools have recruited some of the top players in the country so it was no doubt that we were going to battle against the big guns.

Just stepping onto Alabama soil for the first time, my first thoughts were obviously, "we are definitely not in California anymore." Eyes peered to our LMU gear in the airport and throughout the weekend as if we were celebrities, or aliens....one of the two. Of course, no one has really heard of LMU from the South. Several people actually asked if we were from a school in Louisiana, which had the same acronym.

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The funny thing is, I would not really expect anyone to really have heard of our school out west anyway because even some California folk are not too familiar with our hidden gem in Los Angeles, LMU. As you can imagine, people's eyes lit up when we clarified our location. "Wow, you're from L.A....that's so cool!"

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For those of you whom are not too knowledgeable about Tuscaloosa, the football team pretty much shapes the town. There is not too much to do in the town but Alabama natives are crazy about their football. Needless to say, football is, well, everything.

Coming from a school that doesn't even have a football team, well we did, way back when,...(side note, our coach actually played on the team) we were in for quite a culture shock. I personally was so excited to see what that pride was all about, oh and of course to meet all the friendly locals. 

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It was ironic that our tennis team was making this trip because I actually am currently interning for a local Sports PR firm in Manhattan Beach where two of my bosses went to Alabama. Naturally they are all about their football team and still travel back there from time to time to see games. When I told them I was making the trip, they were stoked and gave me a pre-warning that I was going to absolutely love it.

 In addition, my sports journalism class has required that I religiously follow a college football team and blog about them three times a week so of course I chose the Crimson Tide.

Unfortunately for us, the Bama football team had a bye week and the students were on fall break, so not a whole lot of activity was taking place, but you can still feel the atmosphere and that warm sense of community.

Because we went during this fall time of year, we got to experience the beautiful autumn trees and the fresh, crisp air.  The chill basically felt like winter for us in California. Oh man, we're spoiled.

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Alright, besides taking in all that Alabama has to offer in this little weekend getaway, and believe me, we did, your Lady Lions did travel all this way on a mission. And that was to show these Midwest and southern schools that the LMU lions are on the prowl and would be fearless competitors on the tennis court.

Our tournament started on Friday morning, Halloween. No we didn't dress up if you were wondering. We kept it all business in uniform. We had to layer up big time to warm up though. Our big puffy ski-like jackets and sweatpants were a necessity right up until we played our beginning matches. 45 degree mornings are not exactly what we're used to back home.

Doubles matches started off the day both days, which were followed by two singles matches. All 8 of us played against opponents from all different schools, all of which were super solid and tough contenders. Sure we got a little discouraged with losses but we knew the quality of tennis that we were going to face and our games tend to rise when we face intense, perhaps more experienced opponents, ultimately forcing us to play our best tennis. We walked away from Day 1 with a firm grasp of the competition while knowing we had another day to play all out with absolutely nothing to lose.

After making it through all sorts of extreme weather from 70 and sunny to windy, dark horror movie-like dark clouds and pouring down rain, it was grub time. I suppose it completed the whole spooky Halloween look pretty perfectly.

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We ate at a fun restaurant, which as you can imagine was decked out in all things repping Alabama football from souvenirs to autographed pictures to life-size poster board cut-outs of Coach Nick Saban. The customers and waiters were all dressed up in funky costumes too. It was great.

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On top of that, we had an overly friendly waiter, Eric. I say 'overly' because of course we were expecting a friendly and personable waiter, but this guy, yikes. He felt a tad too comfortable with us. Dressed up in a full-on German Oktober Fest lederhosen outfit for his Halloween costume, he sat down at our table striking up a conversation. Nice, right? Cool he's comfortable with us. But then he kept coming back, over and over, thinking of any excuse possible to keep the conversation flowing. He was just full of stories.

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It was a little overkill. He thought it would be an appropriate time to start one of his stories in the middle of our meal when we were enjoying a quality southern meal where we know we would not get anywhere else. Can't we eat in peace? One of my teammates, Audrey perfectly described our experience as a "dinner and a show." Eric did not fail at the entertainment part, that's for sure.

We were up and at 'em early the next day for round two of our tourney. So no, your Lions didn't spend the night out trick-or-treating around Tuscaloosa.

Saturday was drastically colder in temperature compared to the previous day. Like holy cow, it was close to unbearable. We're talking around 35 degrees in the morning and then it did not reach over 50 degrees, all day long. Not to mention the hailing winds that seemed to blow uncontrollably. Saying that the conditions were tough would be an understatement.

 Yes, we were out of our comfort zones in terms of weather and perhaps people think we were a bunch of wusses but all teams seemed to be struggling to stay warm with the weather. I know myself and a lot of my teammates refused to take off our sweatshirts/jackets and sweatpants the entire time we were playing all of our matches just so that we would not freeze to death. And some of us had up to three matches...rough.

The matches basically came down to who could overcome the excruciating cold or at least become numb to the point that we could just play out to the best that we could. I am so proud that despite the obvious discomfort, none of us showed signs of calling it quits. We were fighters through and through.

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Even though we did not end both days of the tournament with the results that we wanted, our coach was proud of how we gave it everything we had. Hey, we traveled all the way across the country to play, so we had to leave Bama on a good note. 




Yes, we were a little disappointed, but Jamie reminded us that the results did not matter to him as much as long as we capitalized on things we did right in our matches as well as acknowledged the weak areas in our game so we know what to improve on when we return back home. Of course we all want to win, but sometimes you don't take away much from winning except for maybe the pure satisfaction of winning

The caliber of tennis was so high for this tournament so the expectation of winning did not make or break us by any means. I think the comfort and support we all had for each other as a team really helped ease some of the frustrations we had at times.

With so much time spent together in road trips like this, it's a perfect opportunity to spend quality-bonding time together. And we definitely grew a lot closer as a unit which could only help our overall performances on the court.

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For our final night in Tuscaloosa, we decided to go to a restaurant that would so accurately encompass a traditional and authentic southern meal. By popular demand from locals and my bosses at my internship who attend Bama, we went to Dreamland BBQ. 

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It was amazing. It was a perfect little hole in the wall complete with TV screens everywhere (with football playing of course) and Alabama license plates hanging. They serve their food family style there. The waitress handed us all paper plates. It was almost like a big picnic. They brought over various plates of ribs, sausage (seriously the best sausage I have ever had hands down), baked beans, cole-slaw and potato salad. It was everything I pictured a southern BBQ meal to look like, except better.

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In addition to their BBQ delicacy, Dreamland BBQ is also super popular for their banana pudding, so of course we had to give that a try. You don't see that too often back west. It was so unbelievably good. It's safe to say we feasted big time, but if we didn't, than we didn't really embrace the full southern experience and do Bama right.

While at dinner, the group sitting next to us noticed and recognized LMU, no not the LMU in Louisiana, but the Los Angeles one! Apparently all of them were from El Segundo, which we all know is located a town away from where LMU is located. So they all knew LMU and one of the guy's actually took classes at LMU this past summer. Ironic right? They are currently students at the University of Alabama and love it.

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Since we had no matches on Sunday, we had most of the day to explore Tuscaloosa before we headed back to the west coast. 

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Jamie hooked us up with a private tour around the legendary football stadium. It was unreal to say the least. 

We got to walk into the locker rooms and the boxes and inside the stadium itself. You can just feel how big football is to that school-so much pride.

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It was a blast! We took a bunch of pictures for the memories and even snapped a shot with the mascot that we tracked down outside the stadium. It was an awesome experience and Jamie was so great to set that up for us.

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That concluded our Bama trip and I know I am not alone in saying that the South did us well. We got to play some high quality tennis and fully absorb the southern way of life for a weekend. For some of us, we don't know when we would ever venture back there for another trip so we were so lucky to have gotten the experience to go and with great company to boot!

We're on the go once again next weekend! Some of the Lions will be playing in a tournament in San Diego. So let's keep that Lion spark alive and cheer them on!

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That's all for now! GO LIONS!

Logan

NORTHRIDGE TOURNEY AND ALABAMA THIS WEEKEND

Hey there tennis fans!

The end of October is approaching and us Lady Lions are grinding away out on the courts improving and getting stronger each and everyday. Five of us ventured to a tournament this weekend not too far away at Cal State Northridge. There were roughly 12 teams that competed from all over including Seattle University, Portland, Montana, and University of Arizona. And then of course a plethora of California schools including, UC Irvine, UCSD, Cal Poly, Northridge and Fullerton. Northridge has 24 courts, which was crazy so there were lots of matches played all day long throughout the weekend.

Each of us, (myself, Lisa, Ellie, Julia and freshmen, Audrey) all played at least two matches a day which was prime for us to get some quality matches in as well as try out things we have been working on in our grueling practice sessions.

Lisa and I were a doubles team and had a rocky start in our opening matches but had a key win against a couple ringers from UC Irvine where we came back from being down 2-5 in the 8-game pro-set to win 8-7 in the end. We held our heads high. We also took advantage of being a lot more aggressive with being on top of the net because that's very much our game styles. We caught ourselves regressing to the baseline too often where we could not capitalize cutting off angles with a sharp volley or put-away. We figured it out when it mattered most and were happy to get with W.

Audrey and Julia also played doubles together and fought some great battles. They had a solid first round match victory.

In singles play, Lisa played a great round this weekend and won 3 out of 4 of her matches. I went 2-2 with my singles. Ellie, Julia and Audrey faced some tough competition but never gave up and had some awesome matches.

With some fire in our bellies after a fun and competitive week of tennis, us five and Anna, Kylie and Andy are all off to Alabama this weekend for a tournament in Tuscaloosa for our second trip. I did not go on the trip last year but I heard it was quite a culture shock and should be a great time! I have personally never been to the South so I am excited to take in a little of the Southern hospitability upon our visit. We also will have a busy weekend playing some big teams.

The other three members of our team, Kristine, Jessica and Laura will compete in another big tournament, The Jack Kramer's tournament, local in LA. Wish us all luck! Those of us heading to Alabama will hope to rep some serious Lion pride.

That's all for now! GO LIONS!

Logan

REGIONAL RESULTS AND SUNDAY FUNDAY AT THE RACES

Hey there tennis fans,

So our squad tripped it back down to San Diego for regionals this past weekend. We knew going in that every opponent and team we faced would be no cinch. Some of the teams included USC, UCLA, SDSU, ASU and others. Minor injuries here and there got the unfortunate better of us and we could not all produce our best results. However, there were still some stellar performances out at Barnes Tennis Center to note. 

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In singles, Ellie advanced the farthest in the main draw after winning in the first round and then clinching a win over the No 13th seed from Pepperdine the Round of 64. 

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Laura advanced to the third round in the constellation round, Andy advanced to the quarterfinal round of constellations as well as Julia.  As a doubles team, Laura and Jessica reached the Round of 16. Shout out to all the girls who gave it their all! All these teams are tough no doubt about it but we were right in there and hung tough through and through.


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On Sunday, my co-captain, Lisa and I met Coach Jamie and Ivan along with other athletes and coaches from the Women's basketball, soccer, softball and volleyball team at the Santa Anita Race Track for a "Day at the Races."

Our LMU Athletic Director, Dr. Husak was there and joined by other LMU Athletics staff, alumni, boosters, family and friends. It was a great event and we all had an awesome time in honoring all of the amazing women sports here at LMU. Just to add another feather to my coach's cap, he actually started the very first women's sports team! So without him, LMU would not have a female sports program!

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Lisa and I had a blast mingling with some of the alumni who were eager to hear how our team is looking thus far this season. We had our own private designated area for our event as we enjoyed a delicious buffet and took in the sights of the beautiful race track, and tried our hands at a little horse gambling while we were at it.

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I actually have been to the Santa Anita Race Tracks numerous time with my family during the holidays. My grandparents were very much into the horse racing scene so I got to learn a lot about the horse racing culture and whatnot. It was definitely fun to come back there and spray a little knowledge on those who had not been to the race track before. 

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Although I have been there before, my knack of winning in the gambling department is slim to none. I came home empty-handed and lost a little dough as it turned out. I was so set on betting on the long-shot for the final race of the day and because I always love to pull for the underdog, however, this time around, I was a little far-off....okay a lot...the poor underdog came in dead last. But hey, I gave it a shot, and had the outcome been differently, I could have proven a lot of people wrong and walked away a huge winner!

All in all, I think I speak on behalf of everyone who attended the event that we had a blast and it was a success! A Sunday well spent...We got to meet and greet with a jockey and we also got to go through a behind the scenes tour of where horses and their jockeys warm-up before they head out to the race track. It was awesome!

Going back to tennis, next up, we have a tournament in Northridge and six of your lady lions will be competing. Wish us the very best of luck as many of us hope to battle back from some of these little health kinks.

That's all for now!

Logan

REGIONALS THIS WEEKEND

Hey there tennis fans!

Our team is building not only in our skills on the court but also in our friendships. Both components are crucial to being a part of a team. Team chemistry can make such a difference with our performances on the court, and when we spend so many hours together with each other everyday, you only hope that your team enjoys the company of one another! We're all a big family after all. With four years experience as a lion, I can say that's undoubtedly true. And then dazzle that team chemistry in with killer skills on the court and then we are a fierce squad to be battled against.

We collected all of our raffle/fundraising money for our team in the beginning of the week in time for the Puppy Plop event that took place this past Saturday. Overall, we raised a solid amount and we are so excited for all those proceeds to go toward our equipment and traveling fare, etc. Perhaps one of the lucky people we sold a ticket to won the big prize!

Jessica, Laura, Andy, Kristine, Ellie, Kylie, Julia and Anna will all be heading to San Diego this weekend for the ITA Regional tournament. With a solid week of practice last week and double days on our academic day off (look at that dedication), we should be in great position to do really well this weekend! Wish these lady lions luck!

That's all for now!

Logan

FRESHMEN ANNA ROMEKA ADVANCES WINS BIG IN LONG BEACH TOURNAMENT

Hey there tennis fans!

Four of your Lady Lions competed in a tournament in Long Beach this past weekend. Overall it was a huge success all around. Two of our freshmen Kylie and Anna teamed up in doubles to win the back-draw dubs finals over Grand Canyon University. Anna also killed it in singles and won her flight against the host team, Long Beach. Congrats to her... we expect big things from the little lady!

The conditions were not easy this past weekend that's for sure. We are hitting another heat wave once again so it was especially scorching on the courts this past week and well into the weekend. Talk about a never-ending summer, am I right? It's important that we are eating and staying hydrated more than usual when the weather is wildly hot like this.

This coming weekend we have a bye week from a tournament. We also are given the Friday off due to Autumn Day which was initiated by LMU. That doesn't mean that tennis team will be off however. We will kick up our practices a notch so we will be best prepared for the following week where matches and a tournament will resume.

On Saturday, we are hosting our fundraiser on behalf of athletics. It is a puppy plop competition and athletes have been responsible in asking for donations that go toward our athletic program. The proceeds go to equipment, traveling, transportation, etc. Sometimes we underestimate how big of an impact all of these things play as members of our respective teams so it's very important that we all are appreciative for being a part of a Division I sports program as it is indeed a privilege. 

That's all for now! GO LIONS!

Logan

ALUMNI WEEKEND AND FIRST TOURNAMENT KICK-OFF

Hey there tennis fans!

This past weekend was a big weekend for your Lady Lions as we started off our very first fall tournament of the season! Three of our players, Andy, Laura and Jessica, tripped it down with our assistant coach, Ivan to San Diego State. Andy made quite the debut with us and we are so happy to have her!

Jessica, Laura and Andy all competed in different flights of the tournament. Jessica and Andy both won their flights! Jess triumphed over from SDSU in the final. On route to the finals, she beat out the No. 1 player from University of San Diego (USD), in the second round. Andy had some great wins as well and successfully cruised for a final victory in her very first tournament with us! Laura advanced to the finals in her flight but unfortunately had to pull out due to a foot injury. With a little rested time and some healing, she will be able to bounce back! Not to worry! Laura and Jessica played an awesome weekend of doubles together and won a couple matches.

It was also Alumni weekend this past weekend and as I have noticed in past years, LMU makes it a big deal. They love their alumni and all that Lion Pride. I know this to be true because when I would wear any LMU gear around the neighborhood off campus, some alum would get really excited to see students like me repping their alma mater. 

On Sunday, they organize a BBQ for all the alumni where there are a plethora of booths that represent a lot of amazing organizations on campus, as well as some live music and endless food stations and food trucks. It was an event not to miss. This year, our tennis team had its own booth. 

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We were celebrating my coach's 40th year as the head coach in addition to the 40th year that LMU Women's Tennis has been present. Needless to say, Coach Jamie was the founding father of our program! So Sunday, was definitely a call for a celebration!






Throughout the day during the BBQ, my teammates would work shifts at the booth where we were met by tennis alumni as well as others who were interested in hearing how our program was doing. I personally had a lot of fun 

IMG_2596.JPGtalking to the alumni. Getting to hear about some of the alum's highlights and experiences from their time here was a real treat, and it's crazy to think that in just a year from now, I can be attending this BBQ on the other side, as an alum...All the more reason to fully embrace and soak up my last year here. You only college once right?

This coming week, our tournament No. 2 is a local one, in Long Beach. Wish us luck! We seem to have a healthy squad for the matches ahead so we are looking forward to it!

That's all for now! GO LIONS!

Logan

LIONS GIVING BACK

Hey there tennis fans!

For the better three years that I have been a student athlete here, I have really liked our opportunities to give back to the community not only with the athletic program as a whole but specifically within the tennis team. Our involvement in community service keeps us well-rounded so we are not exclusively seen as "athletes" around campus. On Saturday was the "California Coastal Clean-Up Day." So naturally, Coach Jamie wanted to round up us troops and spend some time picking up trash at Dockweiler Beach right near LMU. It's so important to do things like that. And it's great to bring an organization such as our tennis team to participate because it shows that we, as a team are making a difference in the community. Impressed with our efforts to get down and dirty on the beach, Coach Jamie treated us all to a Panini brunch. Back-to-back Panini brunch outings with the team is not too shabby! (we also went last Saturday) I think it's impossible to order anything bad there.

We started up our kids clinics again as another way to contribute community service. We have done this every year since I have been on the team and it's a lot of fun! We work with about 20 kids ages around 3-6 each day after practice finishes up. Three or four of us girls facilitate clinics for the kids each day and we try to teach them a few pointers about the game and hopefully get them hooked! It's a lot of fun and the kids are so cute so we enjoy and look forward to those clinics!

Battling the ongoing heat has been no sinch this past month, but I will say it's a real test of our endurance out on the courts. If we can play in the heat, we will surprise ourselves with how much more energy we will have to perform at a more normal climate based setting. As Division I college athletes, we accept any challenges that are thrown our way because we do hold ourselves to high standards and we know that we can overcome them and excel.

In practice this past week, we played a lot of match-situation points and worked in some match play as well started to form possible doubles combinations. With a new squad this year, we are doing a lot of experimenting and we definitely have amazing talent so it is all about us utilizing that talent in the most effective way in order to play at the highest level and be a mighty force to be reckoned with come spring season time.

For now, we are gearing up for our very first fall tournament in San Diego this coming weekend. Four of our players, Jessica, Kristine, Laura and Andy (transfer from Stetson in Florida) will be representing from our team. So best of luck to those ladies!

That's all for now! GO LIONS!

Logan

FULL PRACTICES START UP

Hey there tennis fans!

Your lady lions have just switched from an eight-hour maximum hours of tennis in a week to 20 hour-full practice sessions. This finally means we can all get a regular routine going so we can arrange our other responsibilities, homework time, meals, downtime with friends, etc. around our mandatory practice time. As Coach Jamie highlights in practice this week, our "time" is valuable.

As a senior who has watched these past three years fly by, I am living proof that time really is precious and it's super important to maximize what seems like so little time to work hard and get things done so that you can fully enjoy other times that are carefree-- times that can provide you with an outlet from the occasional stress from school and tennis. Maybe that's finding other organizations to get involved with on campus because LMU offers countless opportunities for its students.

Perhaps it's just as simple as a quick escape to the beach down the road once a week or finding time to squeeze in a trip to get acai bowls in Manhattan Beach every once in a while. Whatever it is, my advice is to keep an open mind and take advantage when you are presented with an opportunity as long as it is not conflicting to immediate responsibilities at hand.

On the tennis court--the workouts were intense this week and it's been encouraging to see the team support going around to help get us through the tough love and intense practice sessions especially in these blistering hot days that seem to loom around the first couple months of school. In the beginning of the fall season, there tends to be a heavy emphasis on the fitness portions of our practices. We are very fortunate for this because, fitness is most definitely a foundation for us to be a little bit quicker, more agile and athletic as we get into match play.

Coach Jamie treated us to our traditional team lunch at Panini Café, which has definitely been a team favorite spot for many years. Due to their extremely diverse items on the menu, and not to mention, delicious, it's nearly impossible to reach a quick decision of what to eat. The goal is try everything on the menu at least once!

This week, we will continue our 20-hour practice sessions and keep grinding as we inch closer to our first tournament at the end of the month in San Diego.

That's all for now! GO LIONS!

Logan

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My co-captain and I had a captain's night out on Saturday. A perfect example of a solid friendship that formed since day 1 of freshmen year. I am so lucky the tennis team has brought us so close and I am so excited to be working side by side with her for our last year on the team!

WEEK TWO DOWN

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Hey there tennis fans!

We have successfully gotten through our second week of school. Things are starting to settle down and we all seem to be getting the swing of the whole school thing. It takes a little time to adjust and manage our time with all the responsibilities we have as student athletes, but no one is expected to get that all down right away. It takes time.

As an encouraging captain and as someone who's been in the freshmen shoes before (it seems like just yesterday) it's important to know to be proactive but patient during this first month or so of school. We are thrown with a ton of information constantly from professors, coaches, friends to family so it's nice to monitor everything that we are hit with. However, that doesn't mean that we are not going to get stressed or make mistakes along the way.

On the tennis front, we wrapped up our last week of 8-hour total practices for a week's time. We utilized that time for individual workouts, pilates, spin, strength training and conditioning. We also took advantage of practicing with each other on our own time. We're all looking strong and healthy and pumped to be out there on the courts. We are excited that we can finally start full practices this coming week so we can get a routine going and can work our lives around our designated and required tennis hours.

Bring it on week 3!

That's all for now! Have a great week

GO LIONS!

Logan

THE LADY LIONS ARE BACK WITH SOME NEW ADDITIONS

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Hey there tennis fans!

Summer has come to an end but the warm weather certainly hasn't! But hey, I'm not complaining and I bet everyone else who is fortunate enough to go to this amazing school in beautiful southern California isn't either. For those of you who are avid LMU Women's Tennis bloggers, you remember me, Logan Finnell. For those of you don't know who I am, Hi!  I write a weekly blog for the tennis team and I'd love for you all to check it out!

I am now entering my final season as co-captain with one of very best friends on the team, Lisa. I can't believe it! It is definitely a bittersweet feeling knowing I am headed for the real world at the conclusion of this year but I know I'm going to cherish every day because I am so incredibly blessed for every opportunity LMU has given me both on and off the court.

We welcome four new ladies to our team this year. A transfer sophomore from Spain, Andy Crespo, Kylie Waschuck from Canada, Audrey Marquard from Florida and Anna Romeka who is a hometown friend of mine from Monterey, CA. Anna and I grew up playing together and competed on the same high school tennis team. It's awesome that I can spend my last year as her teammate once again. I am so excited to get to know all of these new girls and I think we will have such a fun year ahead of us!

Since the first week of school is very overwhelming (especially for the newbies) figuring out our class schedules, seeing what books we need, finding pockets of free time for meals, homework, a social life and then of course, carving out that time in the afternoon for tennis practice it is nice that tennis is not as strenuous right off the bat because we ease back into it. 

Starting out, we are only required a certain amount of hours whether it's for a team meeting, court time or cross-training of some sort like pilates or spin class. This way, our team can get better adjusted to school and then we can be fresh for tennis when the hours add up for more practice time.

Tennis time may not be as frequent right now, but it doesn't mean we all can't practice on our own time! And already, I have noticed some of my teammates finding the time to get out there on the court or working out so that's awesome! We have to stay in shape at this time because we have fitness testing with our strength trainer, Jack so he can get a gauge of where our fitness level is after a nearly a four month long summer break. 

The testing has been different than some of the returners are used to because Jack was just added to our tennis program last spring. We are excited for him to jump in as our new trainer from the start of the year so he can watch us all progress and improve our strength in the gym that will hopefully carry on to the court as well!

After a long first week of classes, we were all happy about a 3-day weekend. We used the weekend for some quality team bonding! It seems that the new girls are feeling comfortable with us already, which is great. I like to say we are a pretty welcoming and supportive team. 

Because we are such a small team of 13 compared to other sports who have 25+ players, we are bound to form tight unique bonds with one another. Team chemistry is huge and right now, we are developing that very well. It's going to be a long journey but I am ecstatic about the road ahead and stay tuned for the Lady Lions adventures to come when we get into our tournament play next month!

GO LIONS!

Logan

Hey there tennis fans!

It is always sad to end a season in a loss, but we can't win 'em all! Seeded 8, we were excited to face USD for round one in the WCC Conference tournament at Barnes Tennis Center in San Diego.. Yes, we didn't win the first time we played them, but as a refresher, that was our biggest nail-biting match all season; the result literally could have gone either way. It was like a winning loss. It came down to a final deciding match. Oh yes, that fateful match....the one that Coach Jamie said was one of the best matches he has ever seen play in his nearly 40 years of coaching. Miya, don't be embarrassed that I'm bragging about you again... More importantly than almost capturing that win, both Jamie and Ivan were so proud and commended our efforts as if we had been the victors. This time, we wanted revenge against the Toreros.

We met our match on Wednesday. Losing the doubles point was tough. The game scores were super close all throughout and we were fighting with the greatest strength we had in us. Getting into singles, we know we had to put on our A games. The clinch-clinch gives us a little added pressure as well. It was do or die; we had to leave it all out on the court. Unfortunately our No. 1, 2 and 4 lost giving the Toreros the 4th and final win that they needed to advance. Shout out to Ellie who played an amazing match at 6 to win with a score of 6-1, 6-1. Our 2 seniors, Miya (at 2) and Reka (at 5) were making serious comebacks and had the other matches not completed earlier, we would have been a threatening case to win the match! It was such a bummer that their last matches of their college careers were not able to be completed...It was also ironic that the seniors' matches were the only ones that were still in play.

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There is no doubt that clinch-clinch is brutal, but it teaches us how important it is to take care of business, and take care of it quick and effectively. For us players that normally start slow, it forces us to capitalize and play with reckless abandon right from the start of the match. Both physically and mentally, we know that's what we have to do. 



Easier said than done though, right? But hey, we're not perfect. We are forever learning and growing and improving. We don't settle. We are lions, we're hungry and we will keep fighting. This isn't the end. It just motivates us even more to keep working at our games so we can be the best we can and represent LMU in the greatest way possible. We want people to look up to us as tennis players and student athletes radiating lots of LMU pride. Jamie also gave a heartfelt speech commemorating the seniors. It was emotional. 




On a side note, and on behalf of the team, I am going to miss all three of the seniors so much. 

For the two seniors who competed this year, Miya and Reka and Claudia (who was unfortunately ineligible for competition this year), I admire and look up to you guys everyday and am so thankful to have grown so close to you guys these past three years not just as teammates but as life-long friends,...family. You have accomplished so much and have kicked some major butt on the court. I am so excited for what the future holds for you all but I know you will conquer whatever you choose to do just like you've done in school and in tennis! I wish you all the best with your future endeavors and love you all so much!

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Until next season! GO LIONS!

Logan



ST. MARY'S AND PACIFIC AND SENIOR DAY

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Hey there tennis fans!

It's just starting to sink in that we are approaching the tail end of our season! Holy cow! Time flies.  Although we have had our fair shares of ups and downs throughout the season, we have played some unbelievable matches and our team has grown so incredibly close and not to mention, we have created countless memories that we will remember forever. I would have to say that the team chemistry this year is probably the strongest we have had in my three years here. Although when we are out there individually on the court, we still are a part of something bigger, a team. And we are so lucky to be surrounded by such caring, supportive, hard-working and fun group of girls.

Coach Jamie had us do this activity at our Tuesday meeting this past week. He understands that we have been a little hard on ourselves with our recent losses and he wanted to remind us through this activity that a loss is a loss and it shouldn't lead us to individually self-destruct. Jamie thought of a perfect quote the other day when Lisa was having her frustrations get the better of her on the court, and by that I mean she was considering throwing in the towel and becoming a professional ball picker-upper....a promising career? Jamie said, "You don't know what love is until you hate it." Obviously we come to the courts everyday because we love the sport so much, All those hours spent everyday...we wouldn't come out and keep grinding out there if we didn't love the sport.

Jamie tried to reassure us that we can't always love tennis. We have to hate it at some point in order to really appreciate it and love it all over again. That's the way of the world not just with tennis but with anything important to us in our lives. Like I mentioned before, we are a part of something bigger than just ourselves, we are part of an amazing squad that has our backs. We work hard day in and day out, together. We get through the good, the bad and the ugly, together.

For this activity that he wanted us to take part in during the meeting, Jimbo gave us all these small sticks. He had us all recall our recent frustrations and stresses and take it out on the stick essentially and break it in half. Than he got another group of sticks he handed out and he wanted us to put them all together and than individually try to break that. We quickly found out that that was way too hard to do. From this exercise, we learned, we are only as strong as our team together, (so all the sticks together) and we are not nearly as strong on our own. This really hit home for me because it shows how valuable team dynamics are.

It's been so long since we've talked about our pet mascot, Munchie the squirrel, but it is not to say that he's not around, because he most certainly is, but he definitely is a lot more in and out than he used to be. This past week, he really wanted to remind us that he is back on his aggressive food-seeking grind. Some how, I can't even begin to tell you how, Munchie chewed his way through Lisa's Tupperware full of nuts. He actually broke into Tupperware with his apparent razor sharp teeth. I mean that's just impressive. Lisa is supposed to be Munchie's favorites! But hey, a squirrels gotta do what a squirrels gotta do I guess. He peeked to see nuts and he absolutely went after that. I honestly don't know how its little teeth didn't break off after tackling that Tupperware. Lesson learned, Munchie is forever on the prowl. We should never for a second think that he's found new territories to claim or other teams to interrogate with his hunger and killer instincts.

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Saturday's match was against University of Pacific and it also happened to be REPRESENT DAY for all student athletes. Represent day is a day where we try to show our utmost support and LMU pride for all the athletes and go out to watch a game or two. It was not just us who had a match. Soccer, softball, baseball, volleyball and water polo also had games going on. 


So needless to say, there were ample opportunities for fans, peers, family members, or other athletes to come out and game-hop. There was a decent crowd that came out for our match, which was nice. And we won, which was even sweeter! It was a close 4-3 and everyone took care of business and we did what was necessary to win. We were happy to solidify this win because going into the match, they had our same win-loss record, so winning that match can put us in better position for the seeding in the conference tournament.Sunday 

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Senior day was a success. Although the win did not go our way against No. 43 ranked, St Mary's. Kristine's opponent at 1 is ranked No. 8 in the country. All considering, Kristine fought a great battle. The other girls' scores were super close as well but we were not able to come out on the top in the end.

On a happier note, Lisa and I put ourselves in charge for putting together gift baskets for our three seniors--Miya, Reka and Claudia in order to commemorate senior day. Lisa and I love to get cute gifts for friends so we had fun putting together a basket of little trinkets that we knew our teammates would enjoy. We also made them their own picture collages of fun team pictures that we compiled throughout the year.

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As cliché as it sounds, pictures are really worth a thousand words and it warmed my heart to see their reactions when we gave those collages to them. They were all so touched. 

There is always something about getting gifts where you actually spent time to create it yourself compared to buying something at a store that might not have any really emotional connection to it.

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This coming week we have our very last game of the season against Pepperdine on their turf. It would mean the world if you wished us luck or wanted to even make a trip out there in Malibu to watch us go out with a bang one final time....before the conference tournament of course.

That's all for now! GO LIONS!

Logan

LADY LIONS WIN ONE LOST ONE IN PORTLAND AND SPOKANE

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Hey there tennis fans!

After getting Monday off of school due to Cesar Chavez Day, (we did not get that day off of practice however), we had just three days of school before we ditched the oddly cold weather (for LA) for even colder weather up in Portland and Spokane, Washington. And by cold for us, we're talking like 59 into low 60's. Yikes! But we had to bring our warmest clothes so we could bundle up in the bitter temperatures in Portland and Spokane. Thankfully we were playing indoors! A few of my international teammates have had a lot of experience practicing indoors back home so that definitely put us at some advantage going into our matches this past weekend.

Our first match up was against Portland. After losing the doubles point and our first two singles matches, your lions persevered and proceeded to win the next four singles matches to claim the win! It was huge and showed a true sign of teamwork. Being down in the overall match did not affect the remaining performances out there! It occurred to those still out there fighting, that they can still come back, we could still win this thing! With that mentality, we were confident to walk away with the victory and snatch that first conference win! This one was a true team effort!

The next day, it was off to a new state for a new match! The Gonzaga Bulldogs were up next. Although all of the traveling shenanigans wears us out, we knew we had to tough it out because we had to be sharp for our next match. We came all this way, we had to put our best games forward. Sadly, the win didn't go our way this time but we all played our hearts out nonetheless.

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(Coach Jamie on a casual phone call in the airport)

This weekend, we have two big conference matches. We play Pacific (who just joined West Coast Conference this year) on Saturday and St. Mary's on Sunday. Saturday is our REPRESENT game along with a few more sport events and we are trying to get as many fans, family members, alumni and peers to come out and support how hard us ladies have been working all season long. The end of the season is just around the corner and we would love your support more than ever! Sunday is our very last home match and it will also be our senior game so it would be another opportunity to come out and watch! The weather is supposed to be fabulous this week and into the weekend, so why not come out and enjoy a game or two in the sun? These matches are going to be so important, much like every match is but with just one remaining conference match left after this week, we've got to go big or go home, right? Thank you for all your support thus far this season!

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That's all for now! GO LIONS!

Logan

LMU FIGHTS T'LL THE END

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Hey there tennis fans!

All rested from a rather mellow weekend off from matches, we were healthy and excited for the matches this week. Coach Jamie was very impressed with how hard we had been working in practice; he knew that we were gearing up the best and most effective way we can for Friday and Saturday. We were super focused throughout the week and were willing to put in the extra effort to work on areas where we felt needed a little more practice. We were picking up balls left and right with all the baskets we went through so quickly this week.

Friday was our match against BYU. Since our matches come down to clinchers now, every point was crucial. For doubles, once the first two matches in doubles are complete, the third doubles is automatically done. It came down to literally a few points for the doubles point against the Cougars and unfortunately they took the dubs point from us. Despite the opening loss, we kept our heads held high as singles was up next. The battles were hard fought but we fell short with a final score of 2-5. Shout out to Jess and Ellie for their big wins on 2 and 6.

USD was next on the agenda for our Saturday afternoon match. USD has predominantly had a really strong team so we know we had to give them every ounce of energy that we had out there. We clinched the doubles point after amazing matches played. Our 1 and 3 teams played so well as "team" members and executed tremendous game plans. That put us in high spirits and with great confidence going forward. Kristine won her first set 6-2 and her opponent retired due to an injury giving us our 2nd match win. We just needed two more! Ellie secured a win at 6 but we lost at 2, 4 and 5; all of which could have gone either way. At no point of their matches did they show signs of giving up.

The match decider came down to Miya's match at 3. She and her opponent split sets after she won the first set. She came out with so many clutch volley angle winners, which put a lot of pressure on her opponent. A few tough breaks cost her the second set but it was by no means that Miya was losing her fire. Although a little peeved after losing the second set, Miya kept fighting t'll she couldn't anymore. She barely lost in the end for a final score of 6-2, but she played an incredible match showing our team what it's like to compete at such a high level like this. We are so proud of her! Jamie said it was one of the best matches he has seen played in the 39 years he has been coaching here!

Next Thursday, we are off to Portland and Spokane to play the Pilots and Gonzaga Bulldogs. Wish us luck upon our travels and we hope to bring home the wins for you all!

That's all for now! GO LIONS!

Logan

USF FOLLOWED BY A MELLOW WEEK/WEEKEND

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Hey there tennis fans!

It was back up to the bay area for our match-up against USF at the fancy Olympic Club on Wednesday. They came out with no mercy and unfortunately we couldn't execute the way that we wanted to pull out the victory. It was a great wake-up call for us to remind us that every match that we are going to play from here on out is crucial and we all really need to keep the mindset of leaving everything we have on the court even if we are pushing through a tough 3-setter and battling the pain. I would like to give a shout out to Reka and Ellie for their tenacious energies battling through to push both of their opponents to third set tiebreaks. They really gave it everything they had showing off a lot of lion pride.

Every team in our conference is super competitive but I am so confidant that our team definitely has the talent to beat any team we face. We just have to keep up those positive vibes throughout the duration of the season and not let a loss discourage us. We have a lot of matches ahead of us to prove ourselves. 

Us Lions will bounce back next week for our back-to-back matches against BYU on Friday followed by USD on Saturday. We rested appropriately this weekend to recover so we will be more than ready for the week to come!

That's all for now! GO LIONS!

Logan

CONFERENCE MATCHES BEGIN

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Hey there tennis fans!

Spring Break came to a close and that meant that things were starting to get serious for the Lady Lions as our biggest and most important matches were vastly approaching. In fact, we just had our very first conference match this past week against Santa Clara! 

I unfortunately got a little under the weather with a heavy cold/sore throat type deal last week so I was sitting out of practice and taking care of my body, but I knew my team was working hard to be as ready as possible for that first conference match. Santa Clara has always been a tough and competitive team in our conference so we wanted to definitely put on our game faces and best game plans and attitudes forward. On Friday, we flew up to norcal for our match against the Broncos on Saturday. After establishing a pretty solid doubles line-up over the past month, our execution and teamwork looked great out there and we successfully secured the doubles point, which put us in great position to take the match.  We won at 2 and 3 and big shout out to Kristine and Reka who pulled out an 8-0 victory at No. 3 dubs.

Santa Clara's singles line up was solid especially their top players but Jessica, Kristine, Miya and Laura put up great battles! Reka and Ellie had great wins at 5 and 6 which gave us an ending result of a close 3-4 total match score! It's tough to walk away with the loss, but I am so proud of all of them and that is a great tight first match to start off our conference matches.

Next week, we turn around to the bay area on Tuesday morning to play USF on their home turf. The match will be on Wednesday morning! Wish us luck and we hope to do LMU proud and come back home with the win!

That's all for now! GO LIONS!

Logan

LMU WOMEN'S TENNIS HITS PALM DESERT FOR SPRING BREAK

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Hey there tennis fans!

Palm Springs swallowed us up good this week and in the best way possible. We have made this annual trip down to Indian Wells for spring break for the past two year and I can without a doubt say it is one of the highlights of our season and the perfect team bonding getaway....and of course we get to train a little on the side as well. We are so lucky that the BNP Paribas tournament at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden happens to fall during our spring break and the fact that the location is only a short two-hour drive makes it so worth the trip! For those of you who are not familiar with the BNP tournament, it's a professional tennis tournament that attracts some of the biggest tennis pros on tour. It is basically a mini grand slam, and if I didn't know better, I would consider it a grand slam. The atmosphere is so great to be around because we are surrounded by people who love the sport the same way we do.

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We got down here to the desert in the blistering 85 degree heat on Wednesday morning which was quite a relieving sight considering that LA has experienced a significant downpour of rain for a few days. However, we know when it rains, it pours in LA and when that rare occasion does happen, it only last a few days at most.

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Our Palm Springs escape trip came just in time, just in time for us to avoid the final days of those showers! We did just come back from Vegas, but we were ready for more quality team time, some much needed sunshine, and some motivation from some our favorite players--not to mention the studs! We could stay there all day long and watch these men play with their shirts off, showing off their games and their pecks.




One of the players I personally was looking most forward to seeing was John Isner. He's got that All-American, wholesome guy image with that 6'9 physique. I have such a crush...Too bad I couldn't snag a picture with him but I did take a picture of him smiling in my direction so I'll consider that half of a success! We also spent plenty of time picking up what the women in the tournaments were doing for their cross training workouts and ritual warm-ups before they would play a match. 

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We noticed that so many of the women are so incredibly fit and talented that it definitely inspired us to strive to be the most in-shape that we can possibly be for the remainder of the season, and of course, the most important part of the season-conference.

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One of our favorite moments of the trip...literally one of those "die and go to heaven moments..." was when we snuck up on Roger Federer practicing in a corner court away from where the bulk of the practice courts were at the sight. Normally, it would be posted everywhere the location and time where Fed would be practicing because obviously he would reel in a huge crowd...but when we saw him sneak on a court for an extra practice, a few teammates and I had to pounce on that opportunity to somehow get his attention...and we did! 




Due to the rather quiet crowd around us, it gave us a better opportunity to get him to turn around. Lisa, Ellie, Miya and I decided to yell "Roger you're perfect.." when he was sitting down on the bench for a break...Not only does he turn around to see where that was coming from, but he also lets out a big smile and a wave over to us...We wish we got it on video. It was gold. And I know it does not do it justice just to tell it back, but believe me, it was awesome...it was one of those, "had to be there moments."

One of the greatest parts of the tournament is that (most) of the players are very approachable and like to interact with the fans that travel from everywhere to come see them.  Our best bet of getting their attention was migrating to their practice courts and watch them grind out points with their coach and/or hitting partners and flock to the front of the crowd so you can try to think of a clever one liner that will make you standout among the rest so you can actually score an autograph or better yet, a picture, or maybe even a selfie. 

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One of the greatest parts of the tournament is that (most) of the players are very approachable and like to interact with the fans that travel from everywhere to come see them.  Our best bet of getting their attention was migrating to their practice courts and watch them grind out points with their coach and/or hitting partners and flock to the front of the crowd so you can try to think of a clever one liner that will make you standout among the rest so you can actually score an autograph or better yet, a picture, or maybe even a selfie. 

Oh, we got plenty of selfies, and to some we didn't even know, or some we thought might be someone well known...like Tommy Haas' look-alike. Good thing we didn't yell out, "Hey Tommy, can you take a selfie with us?" That would have been pure embarrassment.

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Around dinner time both nights, we went to this outdoor mall-like area which had all of the big chain restaurants like Cheesecake Factory, Yard House, BJ's, PF Changs, etc. because we knew from last year that that was where a bulk of their players would eat....we remember seeing players left and right from last year.


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This year we didn't see as much, but that was because we were probably so actively on the hunt in comparison to last year where they just appeared everywhere and we weren't searching. We did manage to see Lleyton Hewitt back to back nights. He also wore the exact same thing he did the night before, which gave us all a little déjà vu. He was a nice guy though and did take a picture with us...on one of the nights.


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Overall, it was such a fun trip, and a lot of us were sad to return back because we wanted to stay longer and soak up more of the tournament. But hey, I guess all good things must come to an end right? We made it back in time for one more practice before our match against Florida International on Saturday.

We  started off a little rocky in doubles and were lacking energy out on the court. The past few days have gotten the most of us with our long days in the heat and people were starting to show early stages of sicknesses, but we fought through and through. Unfortunately we ended up losing the doubles point but Jess and Miya pulled out a great 8-2 victory at 1. Jessica and Miya also won their individual singles matches in addition to Ellie at 6. With these wins alone, it was not enough to win the whole match so we lost a close 3-4.

This coming Friday, we will travel to Santa Clara for Part 1 of our NorCal adventures and our opening conference match. If you are in the bay area, we would love to see you come out support us lions!

That's all for now! GO LIONS!

Logan

VEGAS BABY

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Hey there tennis fans!

Your lady lions have just climbed the rankings to No. 63! After a big win over No. 44 UC Irvine last week, we were destined to make a jump! Hopefully we can continue to climb higher as the weeks go on!

We just had to get through 4 days of midterms and papers and then we were Vegas bound! It's crazy to think we have already hit almost the half way point of our season. UNLV was anxiously awaiting our arrival and I know we have been working hard on the court to give them a run for their money. The thunderous rain that rushed in on Thursday night and rolling into Friday set us back a little bit however. Due to this rain hick-up, our match was delayed on Friday...so much for "Spring Break." I guess that what happens when our spring break dates are roughly during the ending weeks of winter. Us spoiled Californians have not even seen rain in quite a while. Needless to say, nature really needed it.

We finally got to play the next day, but we also had another match to play which was scheduled prior. This meant that we had to play twice...and for most of us, that meant four total matches. The struggle was real, but it was a real testament to our endurance and mental strength to see if we can get through both matches. We lost our first match against UNLV but we did not let the loss get to us too much knowing we had another match to follow. With a two-hour recovery before match No. 2, Utah State was ready for us. We took care of business and got the 'W' even though we felt as if our bodies were going to collapse. It felt so good to end our double-header with a win and I am so proud of my team for pushing through and hanging tough to the bitter end.


On Wednesday, we head to Indian Wells for our annual trip to watch the BNP tournament for a couple days as well as do a little training of our own. I am literally beyond excited for that and I know the rest of my team is feeling the same. The weather is supposed to shape up a little better when we're down there so we can get a little dose of what a real "spring break" should look like.

We will return back to LMU on Friday in time for our match against Florida International on Saturday. Come out and support if you are in town and would like to show a little lion pride.

That's all for now! GO LIONS!

Logan

LADY LIONS BUST OUT 3 MATCHES THIS WEEK

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Hey there tennis fans!

We have openly welcomed in a new addition to the LMU Women's Tennis family, a new volunteer assistant coach Kerry.  She played tennis for ASU and should be a value asset to our squad. She has jumped in right when lots of matches are underway so she is getting to quickly learn all of our individual game styles.

Wednesday's home match against the No. 42 ranked UC Irvine was intense. After a lot of focus spent on our doubles strategies this week in practice, our hard work paid off and we successfully captured the doubles point giving us a leg up going into the singles matches. We needed this confidence because it had been a few matches or so where we have failed to win that crucial point. 

But things seemed to continue to work in our favor for the duration of the match and Kristine at 1 and Miya at 3 both won big in two tight sets. And finally, Jessica at 2 clinches the final point to give us the 4-3 victory! There was so much focus and tenacity played by all of these ladies and I couldn't have been prouder for their passionate efforts out there!

We posted a 6-1 victory over UC Riverside, which put us on a 4-0 winning streak and brought us confidence going into our Sunday match against San Diego State.

With a 6 AM wake up call and a 7 AM departure to San Diego, we were on our way. SDSU have always forced us to play on our "A' games because they have a tough roster, and are currently ranked No. 58. Putting the ranking aside, we fought a great battle! However, it just didn't go our way in the end and we lost 4-3. We clinched the doubles point with wins at 1 and 2 and won giving us an early lead into the match, but unfortunately we only secured two wins at singles with Reka at 5 and Ellie at 6.

Spring Break is just a week away! We don't get to escape to Cabo like the rest of LMU, because we are just entering the prime of season--conference, but we do get a couple team traveling excursions thrown in with major team bonding. Thursday, we leave for Las Vegas where we play UNLV and Utah State. When we return, we get a few days back at LMU before we depart for Indian Wells to train and watch some of the BNP Paribas Open.

 Last year, we went there and it was definitely the highlight of our season! I know I speak on behalf of the returners-Miya, Lisa, Reka, Kristine, Madison and Ana-Lucia-that we are so excited to goback again! Hopefully Federer can make it up to us this time and pose for a picture since we were literally so close last year!

We will return back to LMU on Friday just in time for our match on Saturday against Florida International to wrap up our Spring Break.

That's all for now! Go LIONS!

Logan

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Jessica clinching that win, coming in for the team hug after UC Irvine win

"FORMING" "STORMING" AND "PERFORMING"

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Hey there tennis fans!

Back to back Sunday matches means come Monday we have the day off...hallelujah. Our muscles are sore and physically and mentally we feel a little bit out of sorts. Those days we have off are key, and it is essential that we all really utilize the day to recover and rest, and perhaps catch up on some of that homework we have...and at times, easy to dismiss.

Coach Jamie reiterated the three stages of our season in our Tuesday meeting; "Forming," "Storming" and "Performing." Forming deals with situating our line-up and figuring out doubles combinations which are still being experimented but we have firmly cemented a few positions which I think will contribute to our success this season.

In the 'storming' phase, we hit some speed-bumps and what team doesn't right? But it's not about us capitalizing on what's not working out, but it's figuring out how best to deal with the situation at hand. If something is not working, how are we going to best take care of it so we can put our best efforts forward and represent our school with Lion pride and win.

Jamie brought out one of his lovely analogies that he likes to throw in to our meetings...He envisions that he drives a bus along this process we call our season, but he will only take people on board if they carry positive energy with them. Positivity is so important on how we conduct ourselves as student athletes of LMU and it definitely has an affect on our performances in matches. So as we get into more matches, Jamie wants to make sure that we check our 'negative energy' at the door and get those positive vibes going because believe it or not, it is a contagious energy and could really make a positive impact on our 2014 season.

Again it's a process, but with our two secure wins under our belts, we know what it takes to play like a team, execute and pull out a victory. Now we just have to take care of ourselves both on and off the court and that means nutrition, sleep and all that good stuff so we can come to the courts each day fresh and positive and ready to kick some lion butt!

We played Cal State Northridge on Thursday at home. We had a shot at winning the doubles point after making comebacks in two of the matches but we fell just short. Coach Jamie was disappointed with us during the 10-minute break before singles and he felt the reason why we lost the point was due to our lack of energy (low energy/negative energy) it all was not good according to him, and he assured us that we really need to pick that up going into the singles. Good thing we changed our approach for the duration of the match. We played with fire and intensity, fighting for every point.

We had key wins at 1 from Kristine who won 0 and 0 which was awesome and Jessica at 2 battled strong to come up and top and Laura at 3 as well as Reka at 4. We ended up with a final 4-3 score and I couldn't have been prouder of my crew! Securing wins this like this allows us to instill this killer and winner instinct--we know how to come back from being down and can turn it around to shift the results to our favor. Now we just need to work on starting off a little stronger so we can maintain a steady lead throughout.

We battle UC Irvine on Wednesday at home along with UC Riverside away on Friday and San Diego State on their home turf on Sunday. Another packed week for the lady lions but we are just inching our way closer and closer to conference!

Wish us luck and we hope to see you all out there!

That's all for now. GO LIONS!

Logan

PS: We finally took a team picture that we actually liked..it only took about 10 takes...

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THERE IS NO 'I' IN TEAM

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Hey there tennis fans!

Your Lady Lions were pretty match-busy this week beginning with UCLA on Wednesday which was a tough one no doubt about it. They are a very strong team. However, it was a great match to play because it forced us to raise our level of play and compete our hearts out there to try to play our best out there and reassure this PAC-12 team that we are not going to give up without a fight!

It was my Swiss teammate's birthday this week and our team all went to dinner to celebrate on Friday before our match on Saturday. We went to C&O's which has the most amazing garlic balls you will every try in your life. By the time you're done nibbling on those tasty things, you barely have an appetite for dinner. It's just that good. All in all, we had a great time! The waiters even handed out flyers to the lyrics "That's Amore" where the whole restaurant chimed into sing at one point of the night. It's like we went to Italy for the night.

On Saturday, we faced UCSB which was a nail biter through and through mixed in with a little bad luck. It was the first match we played with the new NCAA format. This includes 6-game pro-sets instead of 8 games for doubles along with no warm up with the opponents and also no full third set for singles play. For the month of February, the NCAA has issued these new rules as a way to shorten the amount of time we are out there on the court because many times, matches drag out to nearly 5-6 hours long which can be straining especially when we have multiple matches to play in a week. During this month, these new rules will be issued as a trial so we will see how it goes for the matches coming up.

The UCSB Gauchos just came up a little more mentally strong than us in the end. After losing a super tight tiebreaker decider for the doubles point, we got ourselves in more tough situations. Laura, Reka, and Miya all went to third set deciding 10-point tiebreaks. Congrats to Laura and Reka who prevailed. Miya fell just short but put up an amazing effort at 1 singles. We lost 3-4.

Superbowl Sunday also meant our 3rd and final match of the week against Cal Poly SLO. They were a very spirited and strategically intelligent team. We barely lost the doubles point once again which is always a bummer going into singles, however it should not get the better of us and I think that is something that all of us need to figure out how to block out and think of their approach to singles as a clean start so they don't hang onto that negative energy. Shout out to Kristine and Laura for great singles wins at 3 and 4. Unfortunately those were our only wins but the other matches were extremely close give or take a few games.

Our team meeting following our match did not consist so much of breaking down individual matches, but rather an overall discussion about how important preparation is for match days. This preparation includes the breakfast we're consuming (nutrition), are we properly fueling our bodies with the right nutrients before we step on the court? Are we eating enough? Are we also mentally prepared for the match? Are other exterior factors (homework, friends, etc.)  blocked from our minds so we can just think about the match ahead? All of these factors can have an effect on our overall performances on game day. And Coach Jamie really tried to make us understand how important it is that we are all individually taking care of ourselves before the matches get underway. He reminded us, "There's no "I" in team," but there is "I" in win" and it is our individual responsibilities to do our parts.

This week, we have an away match against CSU Long Beach followed by a home match against CSU Fullerton on Sunday! Wish us luck this week!

GO LIONS!

Logan

 

LIONS TAKE AN OPENING 7-0 VICTORY OVER CONCORDIA

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Hey there tennis fans!

No messing around, the LMU Women's Tennis team is back in business! In our opening home match against Concordia this past Saturday, the Lions crushed Concordia Eagles 7-0. Sure there were first match jitters (especially for the newbies) and ancy feet, but we all came together as a team and took care of each our matches to get the win. It's a solid first victory for us and a nice way to tip off the season especially as we head into an intense week of matches to come.

We even attracted some fans to the crowds with our appealing free pizza advertising! Hey, sometimes we have to give the people what they want...and who would turn down free pizza? I think they realized it was an early Saturday afternoon worth spending when they got to watch the Lions kill it on the court in addition to the free meal.

For those of you who don't know, we just resurfaced our courts over Christmas  break so they are a little slower than what we are used ti but I think overall we are adapting to it well. In addition, we have added a tennis shed right next to the courts where we can now put all our equipment in instead of sharing a room with several other teams. The shed is a great place for all the team together prior to matches for pre-rituals as well as for other various team meetings where Coach Jamie and Ivan can utilize the white board we put in and jot down goals for the day or for that particular match etc.

I've teased that idea of putting some couches in there and throw in a flat screen, perhaps some fun lights and we can turn it into a lounge room as well. But I guess for the time being, we'll keep it to storing all of our equipment and other things needed for the team. We would eventually like to hang action shots on the walls in the shed or other pictures of motivation to get us fired up in there.  

At the end of practice on Wednesday, Coach Jamie brought us all together for a pretty startling announcement. Our strength trainer, Nick Longo, who has been here at LMU for as long as I have been a student-athlete here (3 years) is leaving the Athletics Program for a promotion at Colorado State that is certainly in an area for which he has shown a lot of passion. He has been such an awesome guy and he truly cares about each and every one of his athletes. He will push us to limits we think we never can reach and give us some major tough love, which has made us emotionally and physically stronger. He has without a doubt been one of my biggest inspirations and motivators as a coach. And we have been very lucky to have him! Although we are really going to miss him, we wish him the best of luck in his future endeavors.

Coming up this week, we have a schedule packed of 3 matches. We first face UCLA on Wednesday on their home turf, following UCSB on Saturday and finally Cal Poly SLO on Sunday both at home. It is extremely important that we take care of our bodies before and after our matches so recover fast and can bounce back into the matches to follow. We would love your support this week.

GO LIONS!

Logan

 

LMU WOMEN'S TENNIS IS BACK IN ACTION

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Hey there tennis fans!

On behalf of LMU Women's Tennis, I hope you all had an exciting and relaxing holiday season and a great start to 2014! Bring on the new year! To new beginnings, new classes, new routines and a brand new season for your lady lions! We are all aware that LA doesn't have a 'real' winter and especially this time around. It's like we are jump-starting back into school from summer vacation! I know I am not alone in saying that I am not complaining. My teammates who ventured back to the cold in Europe for the holidays were experiencing drastically different weather. I know that for sure because they have all lost their tans....rough. With this blistering heat at the prime of winter here in LA, I'd say their color will return in no time!

A 4-week break was a much-needed time away from school, but I will say by week 3, I was missing LMU, my second home, the place I have fallen so hard for since freshmen year. Knowing that I have 3 remaining semesters left of college, more than ever, I want to cherish all the memories here especially with my tennis team. After all, they are like family. We've all seen each other in the best of times as well as through the tough times. But that's what has brought us together so well in such a unique atmosphere. I'm so excited to be reunited with them all again and get the season rolling! Oh and of course we missed Coach Jamie and Ivan...those troopers who are brave to put up with all of that estrogen. We all know that is no sinch.   

It was a long first week back. We have been away from a regular routine for so long, it definitely will take a little time to get back into the swing of things again with all new classes and a new practice/game schedule. We were not completely out of routine over break, however, because Nick, our strength training coach assured that we stick to our winter workout program religiously. It's one of those workout programs that is necessary for regularity because each week alters in weights. Oh and not to mention we were immediately welcomed back to school with fitness and strength testing our first week back. I mean hey, season is officially here. We have to be proactive with maintaining healthy and strong bodies. And once we get into matches, there is no turning back; match play will be constant.

We did the split squat test, the bench press test, the vertical jump test, an agility test, and lastly, of course, our beloved beep test.... I am so proud of all my teammates efforts this past week with testing. I can definitely tell that they all worked hard over break to keep up with all their fitness. Nick's goals for us were to improve our results from our previous test results before break. With the exception of one or two tests, most if not all of my team improved their scores. That's so awesome! This puts us in a great position moving forward as we enter into our beginning matches.

We did a lot of pattern hitting so we can hit a lot of balls and feel comfortable with our strokes. And we've also been experimenting with potential doubles pairs for season. 

This coming Saturday we face Concordia in our opening match at 11 and we would love some true Lion support! Hope to see you all out there! Have a great week!

That's all for now,

Logan

Pictured below is pictures from everyone's break. 

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Miya (right) celebrating New Years

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Laura (far left) out with friends in Germany

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Kristine hanging out with Viktoria Azarenka







Madison (right) spending time at home with her sister

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Jessica with her pup

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Ana Lucia (right) hiking with her sister

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Lisa (right) and her twin sister back home in Switzerland


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Reka and her boyfriend at the Santa Monica Pier

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my brother and myself at the Rose Bowl game 


Julia showin off her new wheels

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Ellie (right) with Laura and Julia on our first weekend back

THE CONCLUSION OF FALL SEASON BRINGS BACK OUR BELOVED TESTING

Hey there tennis fans!

            We may all be wrapped up with our competitive tennis portion of our fall season, but that is not to say we don't have a little more competitive edge left in us! We have to because all the work off the court (weight lifting and fitness) is all being tested in order to see if we how much our strength and conditioning has improved throughout this preseason. First test to conquer was....the beep test...the one we look forward to the most (just kidding). Most of us were discouraged with our results, but Coach Jamie reiterated that at this point in the semester, our bodies are slightly fatigued. Surely we are not supposed to produce our best results. We have spent so many hours on the court and have competed our hearts out nearly every weekend at tournaments. Throw in spin and pilates and strength training three times a week and you can imagine after almost 4 months in, our bodies are feeling it.  

            Following the beep test on Saturday morning, we all commenced for a team meeting. Coach Jamie delivered a friendly reminder of what we should always keep in the back of our minds when we come to tennis everyday, even if it is just for an ordinary practice. We must think of our long-term goal, the ultimate goal of winning the WCC (West Coast Conference) Championship. When season rolls around in January, we have to take each match, whether it's in our conference or not, and play as if it is a critical match in our bitter competition conference of the WCC. We have 23 matches to play and we must compete in a system that is moving backwards more or less. When we get our first match win down, we think okay, now we let's win the rest that we have ahead of us. Jimbo really emphasized how optimistic of a coach that he is and he wants to train us all to be optimists as we approach our season. Confident in what we can and are capable of accomplishing if we simply just believe and set our mind to it.

            We hit the strength training gym this week for testing for bench press, squats and an assortment of others. I think this will be interesting to test because we have definitely underestimated how strong we really are. But we have definitely pleasantly surprised ourselves throughout the course of this semester session.

            On Saturday night, we put our tennis gear aside and got all dressed up for athlete formal. Last year was the first year LMU hosted an athlete formal, and it's definitely a great way to bring all the athletes together in a completely different environment than what we see of each other everyday. I love seeing how nicely people can look.  I hope they continue the tradition of this for years to come. It was definitely team bonding at its finest. The turnout was a lot more than last year too, which was great to show that each year it's improving in the number of athletes attending.

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            We're coming in the home stretch, and I know we are very excited to get a little mini break next week for Thanksgiving!

That's all for now!

Logan

AND THAT'S A WRAP FOR THE FALL TOURNAMENTS

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!

Logan

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LMU WOMEN'S TENNIS HITS THE SOUTH TO ALABAMA

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!

Logan

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LIONS GET A LITTLE BREAK THIS WEEKEND

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!

Logan

JESSICA ADVANCES TO FINALS AT REGIONALS

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!

Logan

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it's been a long day...

LIONS ROCK IT AT ST. MARY'S TOURNAMENT

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!

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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!

Logan/p>

 

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SAN DIEGO ROAD TRIPPIN FOR OUR FIRST TOURNAMENT

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!

Logan


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THE NOT SO PLEASANT RETURN OF 'MUNCHIE' THE SQUIRREL

           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!

Logan 

FITNESS TESTS FINALLY COMPLETE AND REGULAR PRACTICE REGIME BEGINS

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!

Logan

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LMU WOMEN'S TENNIS RETURNS WITH A BANG FOR 2013-2014 SEASON

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!

Logan

The End of the Road for the Lady Lions

Hey there tennis fans!

"Survive and advance." -Jamie Sanchez

            The Lady Lions will roar no longer as our season came to an end this week during the second round of the Conference Championship Tournament at the Barnes Tennis Center in San Diego.

            We road tripped down two hours south with fire in our bellies and with the will to win. The week that we bring up on the first week of tennis in September and essentially what we think about all year finally came. We faced BYU in our first round, the competitors we had just lost to in our final regular season conference match. This time it was different. The Lions avenged and clinched a win to knock out BYU in the first round of the tournament. It was huge, and a big shout out to Tory Parravi on No. 2 for making that possible in that close final match.

In our second round match against Santa Clara, it looked as though our match could not have been predicted until the very end. Ironically, Santa Clara had us in the same position last year during the second round of the conference tournament Unfortunately this year, Santa Clara just won one more match that they needed to beat us for four total wins forcing the remaining match to stop.

 It's heartbreaking to see such a hardworking, dedicated and passionate team finish so abruptly, but by no means did we not put up a fight through and through. Like Jamie told us, "Survive and advance." We did not have to pull unbelievable stunts to win. We just needed to win the match or matches necessary to collectively claim the victory. Although the Lion's outcome wasn't in the way we wanted it, I am so incredibly proud of each and every one of my teammates. It's a long grueling season of long practice hours, strength training lifts, training room visits, and then factor in classes and homework and papers for days, but hey that's what student athletes are all about. Setting an example for the school as role-models is what I like to think of us as.

We all are going to miss our seniors, April and Adri so much! April, you have been such a tenacious fighter and have the best 'refuse to lose' mentality that I've ever seen in any competitor. It's no wonder when your match record speaks for itself. And Adri, despite your injuries, you have stayed with the utmost positivity that is so contagious and I admire your work ethic so much. It's as if a part of our family is leaving. We spend so much time together, it's hard to think that they won't be back with us. But I wish them the best of luck with their futures! They both shed a tearful goodbye at the final huddle following our match. Now go take on the world!

            It has been a pleasure blogging for you readers out there this season. I had a blast and I hope to continue it on next year as well. I wish you all a very relaxing and enjoyable summer.

Until next season!

Logan

             

 

Lions Wrap Up Regular Season

Hey there tennis fans!

"The past is history, the future is a mystery. Today is a gift that is why we call it the present." -Jamie Sanchez

            No, Coach Jamie didn't actually come up with that quote on his own...I admit that I was fooled for a second though. I was one of the only girls on the team who hadn't heard that quote before. The quote was definitely pertinent to our circumstances this past week both on and off the court.

            For our final home match of the season against the Pepperdine Waves on Wednesday, we tried to create the best and most supportive atmosphere that we could get! We created an event on facebook, made it all of our statuses on facebook, talked to everyone we knew and even didn't know even about our big match. As a Communications major here at LMU, I feel like this was a great way to practice my marketing skills. LMU students sometimes don't find out about sport games unless it's through 'word of mouth.' We also had free pizza and jamba juice at the match to help reel in a bigger crowd as well, which definitely worked to our benefit. I was pretty impressed with the turnout. There were definitely people that stayed longer than to just simply grab a piece of pizza. Some were genuinely interested in our match and wanted to rep some school spirit. Plus some wanted to know the rules of the game because it was all a pretty foreign concept to them. We really appreciated the support though. Thanks so much for everyone who came out! Jamie is also arranged for a radio host from "radiotennis.com" commentate our whole match. It was awesome! A few of the girls on our team, including myself got to make announcements every few games or so. That was a cool experience! I have never been on the radio before!

            Unfortunately the Lions battled tough losses this week against the Waves and BYU on Saturday. It's a bummer to lose but these teams were tough and it did not come down to our lack of talent, it was just execution. On any given day, we can beat any of the teams in our conference. But it just didn't go our way for some of the matches in the bottom half of our season. But we cannot dwell on the past. As the quote says, "The past is history." The only thing that we should channel our energy towards now is the Conference tournament. The future may be a mystery, but we must be positive and focused for what is to come because this is the part of the season that matters the most. And I believe in my team and the determination we have. Bring it on Conference! We're ready for you.

 

            On Tuesday, we head down to San Diego for the Conference tournament where we play at the nice facilities of the Barnes Tennis Center. Wish us the best of luck if you see any of Lady lions around campus! We hope to make you all proud and bring home the championship!

 

Until next time!

Logan

Impressive Losses to Boot

Hey there tennis fans!

"I wish I could understand women. . ." -Coach Jamie Sanchez

            That was the line that Coach Jamie said that stuck out and made our team laugh in our meeting on Monday when he went into telling one of his 'stories.' Gotta love those... After his 38th year coaching the women's tennis team here at LMU, you can say that Jamie has been predominantly surrounded by women his whole life. I have to give him major credit for that. The amount of nonsense that he has to put up with on the daily is beyond me! This sort of goes back to his notion about not understanding women, because in all honesty, no one does! But hey, he can't say that we don't provide him with endless amount of entertainment. We keep him youthful as he gets to stay hip with all the current college lingo, gossip and music and whatever other silly things us girls talk about.

            This is the third week in a row where we've maintained a spot in the rankings. Down to No. 71 this week! We are getting closer and closer to the end of the season and that means the big conference tournament! We had a crazy match-filled week this week.

On Wednesday, we played CSU Fullerton in a non-conference match where we posted a solid 5-2 score. Friday, we traveled to San Diego where we played 2012 defending conference champs, the USD Toreros. We barely lost 3-4 in by far one of our closest matches thus far this season. Every court, each girl was fought with such tenacity and heart. We really came together as a team for this match in that when certain match situations didn't go our way, other situations worked out as each of us had each others backs the whole way through. I am so incredibly proud of the efforts that we showed out there and I have no doubt that the next time we face them, that the outcome will be in our favor. Prior to the match, Jamie told all of us that at this point in the season, "We have to be ourselves." There is no other person or player that we need to strive to be or play like. We must play with the game and embrace the talent that we do possess because the best we can play is at our personal best. And this certainly applies to every day life situations as well.

Following our match in San Diego, we came right back to school to travel again the next day and this time to St. Mary's in Moraga on Saturday morning for a Sunday match. We fell just short with another 3-4 score. Have it be another day where we face them, we can beat them. That score is too close not to think it could have gone the other way. So next time, if we do in fact play St. Mary's we'll be prepared for the win to go our way, much like our logic with the USD match.

            This Wednesday, we play our biggest rival, Pepperdine at our final home match and then off to Utah for BYU on Saturday for our last conference match. The season is quickly coming to a close. We would really love all the support we can get. That being said, please please please come out to watch your fierce Lions against Pepperdine at 1:30. I promise you, it will be one match you will not want to miss!

 

Until next time!

Logan

2 Our Way this Time!

Tough Opening Conference Weekend

Hey there tennis fans!

"Instead of leaning back, lean in and lean on . . ." -Jamie Sanchez

            I hope you all had a nice Easter. In our weekly meeting, our coach, Jamie brought up to us that he cares a great deal for us and not in the way that he feels obliged to say that because he is our coach, but because he truly and genuinely cares about each and everyone of us. I know I speak on behalf of the team that that means the world to us. Each member of the team has a different role and we all have different personalities that make our team a whole. Sure we may be a handful at times and drive our coaches crazy, but they wouldn't want us any other way. We are leaving a memorable legacy for our years at LMU.

Being a part of a team that has great chemistry and are so tight-knit, we tend to 'lean in' and 'lean on' more than we 'lean back.' This can be as little as reminding each other what color we are supposed to wear for practice or match that day or just being that supportive cushion when someone is having a rough day. I think Jamie knows we do this but he just likes to make us aware that just these simple factors can contribute to our success in our matches.

            And our wins thus far this season hold true to this notion. We've jumped to No. 61 in the rankings last week in the rankings! So so proud of my Lions!

            After the conclusion of a successful pre-conference season, we finally started our conference matches this week. We opened with Santa Clara on Thursday, and I could tell going into the match that we all were a little nervous and anxious. I would say that those emotions toyed with our game play especially in the doubles. We started off a little slow, and didn't seem to capitalize with the games and mentalities that I know I we all possess.  A big shout out to April playing at 1 who upset the No. 28 ranked player in the nation, Katie Le. Similar situations seemed to have taken place. Similar unfortunate situations happened in our match against USF. The doubles point could have been ours with the difference of a game or two and that partly shifted our fired-up intensive energy into the singles. But all the singles matches were well fought and super close throughout.

A pair of 2-5 losses were not the results we wanted into our Easter weekend. It is difficult to take any conference loss match lightly because every conference match is crucial. This is when it really counts. But I have so much faith in our team! I really do. Like Jamie always says, "We may not have it all together, but together we have it all." I know that the passion and unconditional support that we all have for each other will help us get through the tough losses and bounce back for our next round of matches.

This week we have back to matches on Friday and Saturday. Friday we play Portland and Saturday, we play Gonzaga. I know everyone out there has busy lives, but if you could spare some time to support your LMU Women's Tennis Team, it would mean so much to us!

 

Until next time!

Logan

A Couple Ivy Wins for the Lions

Hey there tennis fans!

"Your destiny is in your hands."-Jamie Sanchez

Our team always jokes around that our coach, Jamie comes up with these captivating quotes that need to be documented in some way. My teammate, Miya thinks that his 'daily quotes' need to be written in those calendars where there's always an inspirational quote featured on the top of each page. Well at least for the sake of the blog, I am going to try to capture a memorable quote from Jamie throughout the week that I can use as my opening thought and could in fact inspire you readers as much as it does to my team and me. Some might even humor you as much as some do to us as well.

Our team mascot, Munchie (the squirrel) seems to have been M.I.A. these days...and it has started to worry us. It is no wonder, though,  when all we did was feed him a ridiculous amount of trail mix...How can he turn down an ample supply of the munchies? So he's clearly been overdosing on the nuts...I mean, it's normal for a squirrel to be nuts about 'nuts' but we may have taken it a little far. We'll definitely have to ease up on those generous donations of food to our beloved mascot.

Your LMU Lady Lions clinched a huge win over Princeton on Thursday against No. 62 ranked Princeton! After fluctuating in and out of the rankings, we jumped back into the No. 75 this week, and only to prove that we will continue to fight for a deserving spot in the top. After losing the doubles point, we knew we had to come out strong for the singles. It came down to Kristine's match on court 5, and she won so we claimed a 4-3 victory over the Tigers! On any given day, I know we can beat any team. That is just so 100% confident I am in my team. Not only do we have the talent to do so, but because we have the heart and determination. Jamie and Ivan always reiterate to us that are capable of beating any team we come across as long as we are disciplined enough to execute the games that each of us do have and that can really become effective for us as we get into the crucial part of the season.

I want to give a huge shout out to Kristine who is a perfect example of someone who put up a tenacious fight against Princeton this past week. She proved that she will do whatever it takes to win...to give every last bit of energy and drive to get there. She is such an inspiration!

The Lions continued the dominance into Saturday after our win over Dartmouth to cap off our Ivy League-filled weekend of competitors. Both of these teams played with strategic and tactical approaches that took a little time to adjust, but it was nothing that our Lady Lions couldn't handle. We played with patience and perseverance and it showed!

We are approaching Conference matches this coming week! Yeah, it's getting real. This is when it really counts! So we gotta keep that fired-up intensity. As we go into our Spring Break long weekend, we will get into two heated battles against University of San Francisco (USF) on Thursday and Santa Clara on Saturday.

Wish us luck! And have a Happy Easter!

Until next time!

Logan

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Back on the Grind

Hey there tennis fans!

            We found out that our coach is a celebrity this week...On our schedule for the week, Coach Jamie informed us that we would attend the baseball game on Tuesday against Long Beach which came as somewhat a surprise to us considering most baseball practices/games normally conflict with our tennis practices/games. Our initial thoughts were, "Cool, we can go out and support the baseball team since we rarely get to see them play" Jamie, however, had ulterior motives for our attendance of the game.

"Isn't anyone going to ask why we're going to the baseball game"? Jamie asked us. Little did we know that our very own coach would be throwing the first pitch in the game. Our faces all lit up when he told us. We are in the presence of a celebrity! We know how big of an impact Jamie has made to LMU, as an alum, coach and inspiration, so we should have realized that who better to throw out one of the first pitches for a baseball game than him. I mean, let's be real, he basically is an LMU celebrity...

            This week in strength training, Nick stressed how important it is for us to maintain our same workouts in the gym each week and to refrain from changing up the routine. This is so we will not feel fatigue from pushing too hard in weight on a particular exercise. I think that's a definitely a safe move considering we are in the middle of season and have matches on average at least once or twice a week. By sticking with the same exercises, we are challenging ourselves to peak in strength by progressively going up in weight each week. That's right, us Lady Lions got muscles! I know I can personally admit that I have not woken up the following day from lifting where I was so sore and couldn't move. So that's a plus for sure.

            This past Saturday, we faced New Mexico for an 11 am game time. We took care of business and ended up with a 5-2 victory. Despite some neck and neck battles, we came up on top, which gave us a little ego boost for working well with pressure situations. Getting through tough situations like these will help us be more prepared for Conference matches just around the corner, come the end of the month in fact.

            We have two matches this coming weekend. The Ivy schools are making their way to the 'west coast' aka the 'best coast' for some competitive matches. We play Princeton on Thursday and Dartmouth of Saturday. Come support the Lady Lions in their final matches before we get into Conference matches. We would really appreciate it! And spread the word!

 

Until next time!

Logan

Spring Break for the Lions!

Hey there tennis fans!

            First and foremost, I must announce that your LMU Women's Tennis team has just jumped into the rankings for the first time in 6 years! We have now captured the No. 72 spot, and are only moving up from here! This was great news to start off our Spring Break, that's for sure...

            While Cabo was on a lot of LMU students' agendas this Spring Break, our tennis team had other plans. I can finally cross 'hiking the Hollywood sign' off the bucket list because that has been a long-time goal of mine ever since I moved to LA to go to college. Than it was off to Palm Springs for the BNP Paribas Open. It was such a blast! Who needs Cabo when we are making unforgettable memories in the desert with the best team around?

The night we arrived, we unexpectedly ran into tons of pro's who were playing in the tournament. It seemed every time we would turn a corner, we would recognize someone, as if it was just an old friend, and not the fact that we are simply star-struck tennis fans. The adrenaline that was going through our heads at that point was through the roof. We were casually walking off our dinner in this outdoor mall and boom, tall, hunky tennis players galore. You can spot that tennis player's physique from a mile away!

It was a quick trip, but jam-packed nonetheless. Coach Jamie would get us up for an early 6:45 wake-up call so we can have a nice breakfast and than head out to the courts for some training. It's amazing how cold and windy the desert can be in the morning, which created quite the obstacle playing tennis in the early hours. But hey, it's good for practice.

            After we got our work done on the court, it was time to watch the pros in action! It's amazing to see how much more inspired we become to play better after watching the pros battle. Their athleticism and mental toughness is hard not to notice. I think our team enjoyed watching the pro's play on the practice courts so we could get an exclusive look to their warm-up and practice routines. And the best part about the practice sessions is that they spend quite a bit of time pleasing the fans with pictures and autographs. So naturally, the Lady Lions flocked to the front of the crowd to get close to the players any chance we got. And I must say that we got quite a few pictures with the big stars. You can say it easily made our lives to get that 3 second pose with the top players of the game. I think I can speak on behalf of my whole team that we would love to make an annual trip to the BNP because it conveniently falls during our Spring Break each year. Food for thought Jamie...

            I was working a lot of the time behind the scenes with Media because I landed an internship with "Inside Tennis" magazine as a journalist. I have been working with them since last November, and I have had the privilege of interviewing a lot of people in the professional tennis industry who I truly admire, so that's been an incredible honor. Specifically at the BNP, I had the opportunity to listen into press conferences and "take in" the daily routine of what a journalist goes through during the midst of such a great and credible tournament like the BNP Paribas Open. My boss, Bill Simons who is the Editor and Publisher of the magazine had faith in me to strike up a question during a press conference. My first thoughts were, "there's no way...I would be so nervous!" But I think eventually, I will have the guts to speak up and compose a question.

            Following the tournament, our coach went to Las Vegas to attend the WCC Hall of Honor Bruch of former athletes. One of his former players was being recognized in a huge honor. Edit Pakay was not just a star tennis player, but she also shined in cross-country as well. As a two-sport athlete, she set the bar so incredibly high for future athletes at LMU. She did cross-country in the fall and tennis in the spring. Wow! As a cross-country runner, one of Pakay's biggest accomplishments was winning the WCC Women's Cross Country Championship 5K. In tennis, Pakay led the Lady Lions to a victory over Pepperdine to win the 2002 WCC Women's Tennis Team Championships. She also managed to post a 63-41 singles record in her career which placed her ninth in the LMU record books for career winning percentage. That's awesome to know that such an accomplished athlete made her mark on the LMU grounds.

            The momentum of landing the No. 72 spot in the rankings has worked to our advantage as we managed to take the "W" over Cal Poly on Sunday 5-2. I am so proud of our team for finishing off our spring break with a solid win.

            This coming Saturday, we will face New Mexico at 11 AM. We would really love to see you all out there!

Until next time!
Logan

(check out some of the pictures from our trip)

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Midterms Are Over!

Logan's Thoughts - Feb. 25, 2013

Hey there tennis fans!

            We are just a week away from Spring Break. We can do it! It's hard to believe that we are nearly halfway done with the semester. It has been midterm season here on campus which has given students the excuse to walk around like zombies from class to class. When it's time for tennis, however, we have to block out that stress that is hitting us like a ton of bricks. At times, it is super difficult, but with such a supporting squad that we surround ourselves with, I think we do a great job of keeping our minds off of the cruel papers and evil exams with our jokes, oh and of course Munchie, our pet mascot.

            Exercise in general is such an amazing stress reliever especially in times like these, and we are so lucky that tennis is a part of our everyday lives. It feels so good to get through a tough academic day and escape to the courts where we can just forget about our studies for a while to grind out our strokes. Our daily dose of tennis helps us carry on the rest of our day refreshed and of course, fit. We try to maximize every minute that we're on the court because we know our homework will come soon enough. It's part of the trade-off of being a student athlete. We get to play the sport but we gotta put in our studies too.

A lot of my friends who are not on athletic teams at LMU envy that we are guaranteed at least two hours of physical activity a day. They wish they can make trips to the gym everyday, but it's difficult to fit it in their schedules sometimes because they are involved with a number of things. I admire that my fellow students keep themselves busy and are so engaged with the LMU community and all the opportunities that it has to offer.   

            We were on the road this past weekend against SDSU. Our No. 2 player, Tory and No. 4 player, Miya were overcoming injuries this past week so they weren't able to compete in our match so we made a few adjustments in our line-up. Everyone who was playing came out ready to compete and we faced some tough battles. Clau and April had an amazing 8-4 victory at No. 1 doubles. Their intensity was high throughout the whole match; it was so great to watch their chemistry work so well together. Kristine was happy with her win at No. 4. singles. She claims, "I stuck with my patters and didn't get impatient." April almost walked away with a win at the 1 spot and had unbelievable points while keeping that 'aggressive April mantra.'

In our team meeting following the match, Coach Jamie advised us the importance of discipline and that we need to implement it a little more not just for tennis, but it's all the factors that contribute to our performance on the court such as getting our proper warm up series in (band work, stretching, dynamic warm up) and drinking the appropriate amount of fluids and staying fueled so we never lose our energy on the court. Then we have to make sure we are drinking the U-Can shake Jamie wants us to take, get ice wrapped if necessary and then get our foam roll on to flush out those tight muscles. There is so much that we have to incorporate besides playing a match, but I have learned how crucial it is to our actual performance on the court. All of these factors are supposed to prevent us from fatigue during our demanding in-season schedule.

This Thursday, we play Nevada-Reno at home and we would love to see you out there on the courts at 1:30!

Until next time!

Logan

The Week That Was in Lion Sports - February 19

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This blog is written by Ray Ferrari, a sophomore Communication Studies major from Eugene, Ore. Ray works in the LMU Sports Media department, is a leader of the ROAR Student Section, is a former sports writer at The Los Angeles Loyolan, and is a member of The Crimson Circle service organization. His weekly recap of LMU Athletics will be posted here every Tuesday allowing for a quick glance at the week that was in Lion Sports.

With baseball and golf beginning play last week, spring sports are now in full swing and hoping to provide some Lion success as the basketball teams continue to struggle towards the end of the winter season.

The baseball team started their season at home over the weekend with a series against the visiting Utah Utes. After a sloppy Friday game left LMU with a 6-3 loss, the Lions then turned the series around with stellar pitching. The Lions won 1-0 on Saturday and 11-2 on Sunday to take the series and advance to 2-1.

The golf team had its first tournament of the spring last week at The Farms Golf Club in Rancho Santa Fe, Calif. The tough course conditions left the Lions scrambling all week, which resulted in a tenth place finish out of 12 teams. Now, LMU is currently playing in the Folino Invite at Industry Hills Golf Club in Industry Hills, Calif., which will finish play later this week.

After a strong 3-1 start, the women's tennis team hit a bump last weekend in Santa Barbara. A long match with UCSB brought play into dusk and with no lights on the court, two of the singles matches had to be decided by quick tiebreakers rather than a third set, which led to a heartbreaking 4-3 loss for the Lions. LMU was then defeated again the next day 6-1 by the University of Colorado.

LMU track and field competed at the Pomona-Pitzer All-Comers meet over the weekend. The highlight of the meet for the Lions was junior Kevin Joerger winning the 3000-meter race. Many other lions set personal records at the meet as well.

The men's basketball team went 0-2 on the weekend yet again, extending their losing streak to ten games and dropping them to 1-12 in WCC play. At Pepperdine on Thursday, it looked as if the Lions were finally going to get a win but a pair of missed free throws by the Lions and a basket by the Waves in the final minute gave Pepperdine the 52-50 win. At home against Saint Mary's on Saturday, the Gaels roster was just too big and too deep to handle, defeating the Lions 61-50 in front of the parents' weekend crowd.

The women's basketball team only had one game last week, which was a home loss against San Diego on Thursday. The 66-59 defeat was close, but LMU trailed the entire game. The loss dropped the Lions to 3-9 and seventh place in the conference.

Swimming, women's water polo, softball, and men's tennis were off last week but will return to play next weekend.

Logan's Thoughts - Feb. 18, 2013

Hey there tennis fans!

            I hope you all had a well rested weekend and enjoyed the weather reaching into the 80's believe it or not. It's about time! We're so spoiled living in Southern California sometimes. Anything in the 60's and below is freezing to us. We can't even fathom what the harsh winters are bringing the east coasters right about now.

            Most of our team battled little hick-ups of injuries, which prohibited them from carrying on full practices this week. However, they properly took care of themselves in the training room and built up each day with more hitting in order to gear up for our big weekend of back-to back matches in Santa Barbara.

            My Peruvian teammate Claudia, but we call her "Clau" put on a lovely upbeat Spanish playlist for our strength workout with Nick this week. There's something about that Spanish flavor that is so catchy sometimes. Even Nick, our strength training coach and the most difficult to please when it comes to music, enjoyed the little Spanish mix.

            After drowning our sorrows in the thought that none of our team had valentines for Valentines Day (except for Adri who has a boyfriend who we all love and is one of our biggest fans) our coach, Jamie, or 'Jimbo' as we prefer calling him, gave us a glimmer of hope when he blessed our whole team with V-Day grams. It easily made all of our days! We couldn't have asked for a better valentine! We carried out the rest of day in high spirits and positive vibes, and then some of us treated ourselves to some Pinkberry later where I got my first medium sized fro-yo! I always settle for the mini, but in honor of this holiday giving me an excuse to binge on sweets, I thought why not go up in size! Oh man it was good.

            Unfortunately your Lady Lions faced two tough rounds of tennis in Santa Barbara this weekend. We fell just short to UCSB 4-3 on Saturday where we seemed to have had a rather slow start. On Sunday, we lost to Colorado State. I think our team has a lot of energy and spirit but we sometimes channel that energy elsewhere for a little. Winning that doubles point is so key and can really help our confidence towards the singles matches to follow. However, we have to keep up the intensity throughout the whole singles matches because they are not quick 8 game pro sets, they're 2 out of 3 sets. You gotta be in it to win it the whole time because the match doesn't end after the doubles point! There are definitely things we all need to work on but I am confident, without a shadow of a doubt that our team can improve and get there!

            In fact, I think we will make some improvements by this Friday against our match against SDSU. Wish us the best of luck for the upcoming week! We hope to kick some lion butt and do LMU proud!

Until next time!

Logan

The Week That Was in Lion Sports - February 11

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This blog is written by Ray Ferrari, a sophomore Communication Studies major from Eugene, Ore. Ray works in the LMU Sports Media department, is a leader of the ROAR Student Section, is a former sports writer at The Los Angeles Loyolan, and is a member of The Crimson Circle service organization. His weekly recap of LMU Athletics will be posted here every Monday allowing for a quick glance at the week that was in Lion Sports.

As the basketball teams continue to struggle, disappoint, and sometimes embarrass the LMU community, the fan base is beginning to look towards the spring sports season with hopes of Lion success.

The sun is out and the grass is looking good at Page Stadium, where the baseball team will open up its season this weekend when they host Utah for a three-game series. Tuesday night in the batting cages, the LMU baseball program is having its first event of the new "10th Man" project in hopes to gain more of a fan presence in the stands at baseball games for 2013.

Softball opened up their 2013 season last weekend in St. George, Utah, where they played five games in three days in true collegiate softball fashion. The Red Desert Classic gave LMU five games against five opponents to kick off the year. The Lions started off strong with a 9-0 win over Colorado St. and a 6-0 win over Weber St. The Lions also beat Utah St. 3-0, but lost games against Utah and Arkansas for a 3-2 tournament record. 

The women's water polo team also had a big weekend, going 3-1 with three of the four games decided by two goals or less. At the UCSD Triton Invitational, LMU opened play against the host team, #19 UC San Diego, which ended in a bitter 8-7 loss. The Lions then went on to win the rest of their games with big wins over Marist, CSU Bakersfield, and #10 Michigan.

Women's tennis also continued its early season hot streak last week with a 7-0 sweep of UC Riverside at home. The Lions are now 3-1 and undefeated at home to start the 2013 campaign. They will continue their full, tough non-conference schedule next weekend against UC Santa Barbara and Colorado.

The men's tennis team is still trying to find its rhythm early on in the season. The Lions are in the midst of a long and exhausting road trip, containing match after match of tough competition. This along with three crucial injuries has resulted in a 0-6 start after falling to UC Santa Barbara 6-1 and losing 5-2 at Cal Poly.

The women's basketball team finally got a much-needed win last week, when they took down Santa Clara 71-50 at home last Thursday. The victory snapped a four-game losing streak but was followed with a game against first place Gonzaga, in which the Lions lost 70-56.

As for the men's basketball team, most of you know the story. The Lions have displayed a fruitless offense all year and continue to live and die by the three. And for a team that is bad at shooting threes, that means lots of death. LMU continued to shoot terribly from the field in the Northwest over the weekend, as the team dropped to 1-10 in WCC play after a 69-60 loss at Portland and a 74-55 loss at Gonzaga.

Logan's Thoughts - Feb. 11, 2013

Hey there tennis fans!

            We have a new pet mascot, well I guess he's always been around but we might not have noticed him as much as we do now. 'Munchie' as we like to call him, is a squirrel that likes to show up at our practices on the stands of the stadium courts where all of our backpacks are in hopes that we will bless its little heart with scraps of food. To his delight, most of the food we bring to practice or at matches is trail mix and fruit, which is essentially the diet of a squirrel. You can only imagine the excitement that is presented on its face. We feed him from time to time, but what we are starting to realize is that the more we feed him, the more often he is going to return and perch up for more snacks. We will have to do some closer monitoring especially since he has found a way to get into some of our bags and find food.  On the plus side, I think we have found our No. 1 fan!

            I was happy to be mostly pain-free this week during my abbreviated practices on the court. I am slowly getting back to playing, but each time I'm out there, it makes me appreciate being healthy again. As painful as it might be to sit out for a while and rehab, it feels amazing to get back on the court and play. I missed it so much!

            We landed our first match sweep of the season over UC Riverside on Thursday. Our No. 2 player, Tory Parravi sat this match out to recover from a pulled muscle in her arm so the lineup was adjusted slightly. I'm proud of my Lady Lions for taking care of business out there. We hope to keep this winning energy and results into next week against Santa Barbara and Colorado State. Wish us luck!

Until next time!

Logan

Logan's Thoughts - Feb. 5, 2013

Hey there LMU tennis fans!

            February is already here! We are inching our way closer to consistent warm temperatures and healthy people overcoming their sicknesses. Getting sick in college is the worst!  When one person gets sick, it's nearly impossible for others not to catch whatever bug is roaming around campus. Unfortunately, I caught this little 'bug.' It started with a sore throat and quickly turned to a flu. Living in such close quarters with my roommates and being around my teammates everyday for long periods of time, I have warned them all to take every pre-cautions for getting sick. Emergen-C and Vitamin C is key at a time like this! I am extremely stubborn when it comes to being sick, so I think I am better than I actually am, when I realize I'm not, and I really just need to just stay in bed and let this sicknesss just run its course. I finally gave in and got an appropriate and relaxing 12 hours of sleep. And oh man, that made all the difference! Our coach keeps suggesting to our team that we get flu shots, and after this little sick period, I wouldn't say that's such a bad idea!

            Our strength training coach, Nick gave us little gifts this week in weights. He helps us get fit in the gym, and he gives us gifts? What a guy! We all got our own foam rolls and stretch bands which will be very useful for us prior to getting on the court as well as after to stretch out all of those body kinks and sore muscles. Coach Jamie and Nick want us to incorporate the foam roll and stretch band into a routine every time we step on the court. Sure, it might require a little more time, but it will be worth it in the end when we are not aching the next day with unbearable pain. Our body can be fresh and ready for the next day of tennis whether it's practice or for a match. Otherwise, we might need to take an additional step back and take it slow so the body can recover a little from the harsh strain that was put on it the day before. So I think this new addition to our regular routine will make a difference in our success this season! Plus I think we look pretty cool lugging around our little foam rolls around!

            We had an awesome weekend of tennis! Your LMU Lady Lions pulled out a major upset against No. 39 ranked CSULB (CSU Long Beach) on Friday. I am so proud of all of them! We had a really tough match against them last year where it came down to the bitter end so it was really nice to get the victory this time around! Sweet revenge! On Sunday, we lost a tough match against UC Irvine but we battled hard!

My Switzerland teammate, Lisa turned 22 on Wednesday. As a team, we took her out to Venice for dinner to celebrate! Venice is such a fun place to go, and we're so lucky that it's a short distance from campus...yet another reason to love LMU.

            Next week, we have a match against UC Riverside on Thursday at 1:30! Come out and support and wish your Lady Lions good luck!

Until next time!

Logan

The Week That Way in Lion Sports - February 4

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This blog is written by Ray Ferrari, a sophomore Communication Studies major from Eugene, Ore. Ray works in the LMU Sports Media department, is a leader of the ROAR Student Section, is a former sports writer at The Los Angeles Loyolan, and is a member of The Crimson Circle service organization. His weekly recap of LMU Athletics will be posted here every Monday allowing for a quick glance at the week that was in Lion Sports.

Lion pride is at a true low point around campus these days, with most LMU teams continuing their slumps over the past week. 

In what some might call the most anticipated LMU sporting event every year, the men's basketball team had no answers for the visiting Gonzaga Bulldogs. Last Thursday, LMU hosted Gonzaga in front of a packed Gersten Pavilion with hopes of upsetting the No. 7 Bulldogs, who are undefeated in the WCC. But the Lions failed to get stops on defense or baskets on offense, which added up to an embarrassing 88-43 loss. 

The women's basketball team had an unpleasant visit to the Northwest over the weekend, dropping another two conference games, extending their losing streak to four. Thursday night, the Lions fell to Gonzaga 79-57 before losing another close game with Portland, 65-63 on Saturday.

In their final meet before the season finale at the MPSF Championships, the LMU swimming team dropped a pair of decisions at UC Santa Barbara Saturday. At the double dual meet, the Lions fell to host UCSB 176-85 and also lost to Pacific 159-103. This meet ended the Lions' regular season, as the team will now begin preparation for the conference championships in two weeks.

The women's tennis team provided the highlight of the week when they upset No. 39 Long Beach St. at home 4-3 on Friday. The big non-conference win took the Lions to 2-0 to start the season. However, their luck changed when they went on the road Sunday as LMU was swept 7-0 to No. 65 UC Irvine.

The men's tennis team had a tough test at hand on Sunday as they took on No. 2 USC, who has dominated the region for years. The Lions lost 6-1 and dropped to a bitter 0-4 to start 2013.

While most of the teams in season are struggling, other teams are making coaching moves in hopes to foster future success. The women's volleyball team just named Ron Larson as its top assistant coach. Larson is the former head coach at UC Riverside and has also helped coach the U.S. Olympic team. The softball team just added Katie Schroeder to the coaching staff as well. Schroeder was a two-time All-American for UCLA before graduating last year. 

The Week That Way in Lion Sports - January 28

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This blog is written by Ray Ferrari, a sophomore Communication Studies major from Eugene, Ore. Ray works in the LMU Sports Media department, is a leader of the ROAR Student Section, is a former sports writer at The Los Angeles Loyolan, and is a member of The Crimson Circle service organization. His weekly recap of LMU Athletics will be posted here every Monday allowing for a quick glance at the week that was in Lion Sports.

It's an exciting and busy time in LMU Athletics this week, as the winter sports are still in full swing, with spring sports action starting to heat up.

The biggest game of the week was the men's basketball matchup with hated conference rival Pepperdine. A huge game for the Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) Cup, the Thursday night home game brought out the masses to Gersten Pavilion. After a close battle for 40 minutes between the Lions and the Waves, a late LMU push was not enough as Pepperdine escaped with a 60-57 road victory.

The women also had a tough Thursday night as they had to travel to Provo, Utah for a big game with BYU. The Cougars were dominate from the get go, as LMU fell 72-53 on the road. Both basketball teams had byes on Saturday and will return to action against Gonzaga this Thursday.

It was a fun day at the pool Saturday as the women's swim team had a big turnout for their senior day meet. The Lions swam against Cal State Bakersfield and Cal Baptist in their final meet of the season at home. After a long and exciting day, LMU split the double-dual meet, beating Cal Baptist but falling to CSU Bakersfield. 

Women's water polo had a big weekend at the UC Santa Barbara Winter Invite. On Friday, the Lions fell to #5 Arizona State 11-7, but came back firing on Saturday. The second day of the invite saw the Lions get two key wins, crushing Azusa Pacific 17-2 and pulling out a win against Santa Clara 14-12. Unfortunately, the Lions climbed back down on Sunday as they let one get away against Pacific 8-6 and lost to #1 Stanford 14-8. 

The women's tennis team was battling the Los Angeles rain all weekend. Their opening match against Westmont College was postponed on Friday and their Saturday match was pushed back a few hours. But this did not slow the Lions down as they came out strong in their season debut at home Saturday. Taking on Concordia University, Irvine, the Lions swept the doubles and singles rounds en route to a 7-0 win to start their 2013 season 1-0.

However, the men's tennis team was on the other end of a sweep this weekend. Traveling to Iowa for an ITA Kick-Off Weekend event, the Lions continued to struggle in 2013. Saturday, they were swept 7-0 to Illinois State before losing 5-2 on Sunday to the hosting Iowa Hawkeyes, dropping LMU to 0-3 on the season.

Logan's Thoughts

Hey guys!

 

            I hope you all had a nice weekend and great start to your week. I can't believe the Australian Open has come to an end. So many upsets and prime matches were played and in what better place to watch it all go down than in Melbourne, Australia. At some point in my lifetime, I would love to go there, not only to experience the amazing tournament in the scorching summer sun, but also to just be a tourist and see the sites. With all that high level tennis that was played in the past 2 weeks, I think I not only speak for myself, but for everyone, that it motivates people more to get out there on the court and play. I am especially hungry since I am still fully recovering from my Achilles injury. I'd prefer getting out there without further delay. But I guess my body will have to be the judge of that!

            Our coach, the legendary, Jamie Sanchez announced mid-week that our team received the highest GPA of all sports team at LMU along with the rowing team. The look on our faces was pure thrill and a little shock. We did not see that coming! It shows that we work hard not just on the court but in the classroom too! We were so humbled and honored. During the Alumni basketball game on Thursday against our rival, Pepperdine, we were recognized on the floor at half time. It was our 10 seconds of fame! Well done Lions!

            Nick, our strength trainer, had us working on a ton of upper body workouts this week, and I have to say, I feel that we are all getting a lot stronger. It also helps to take a lot of time at the end of our workouts for proper stretching and foam rolls. In the past, we tend to rush our stretching and wonder why we feel so sore the next day. Stretching is so crucial to prevent fatigue and injuries. Overall, this year, we've been a lot more conscious of taking care of our bodies post workouts or intense practices or matches on the court. And of course there's Nick and our coaches that keep preaching the importance of stretching over and over again.

            Our glimpse of warm weather came to a halt this week with a few downpours, which unfortunately prevented our first match from taking place at Westmont College in Santa Barbara on Friday. Luckily, the rain stopped in time for our home match on Saturday against Concordia. The Lady Lions secured a 7-0 victory over the Concordia Eagles, which was a great first win to start off the season.

 

That's all for now!

Logan

Getting Started

Hey there tennis fans!

            My name is Logan Finnell and I am a sophomore on the LMU Women's Tennis Team. I am taking over as the blogger this semester on behalf of my team where I will update you on recent results, team adventures traveling, as well as give you an inside look into the life of a college athlete.

I hope you all had a very nice holiday season and a happy new year! 2013 is upon us. This means, a new start, new beginning, and of course, a new season for your LMU Lady Lions! It was so nice for our team to reunite during our meeting on Monday after not seeing each other for four weeks. Being away from my team for so long, makes me realize how much I miss them because we are all so incredibly close, much like a tight knit of family of 13. We are that way, because we do spend countless amount of time together on the court, in the strength training gym, in the training room, as well as in classes. So you can say that we all see each other pretty darn often. It is so nice to be surrounded by teammates who are constantly encouraging and supporting one another whether it's through competitive match situations, or when someone's trying to bounce back from an injury, or even when the strains of academia get the better of them.

This week, our focus has been directed towards getting quickly adjusted back into our regular practice routine and a new strength-training schedule. It was also the dreaded, "fitness testing" week. I unfortunately am still recovering from an achilles injury for another week so I had to miss our fitness testing and tennis practices, but I am optimistic to return shortly! We knew that the holiday season brings a lot of unhealthy eating habits and perhaps a lack of exercise, but not for us! We instead tried to create a happy medium between the two. Sure, we enjoyed our holiday treats, but we made sure to maintain a relatively good diet regiment and kept up with our workouts from Nick, our strength trainer in addition to getting out there on the court as often as we could. Everyone is looking good; yes, we've lost a little color in our skin tone due to the bitter cold temperatures that a lot of us faced returning back to our homelands over break. Not to worry though! The hot weather months are approaching, and LA never disappoints to provide us with that sunshine that we've been missing. On Saturday we took our team pictures and individual pictures for the website. You can only imagine the anxiety going on prior. "Is my hair okay?" "Should I wear it up or down?" We are girls remember, we are bound to act like this before we get in front of the camera!

This Friday will be our first non-conference match against Westmont College in Santa Barbara! So wish us luck!

Until next week!

Logan 

The Week That Was in Lion Sports

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This blog is written by Ray Ferrari, a sophomore Communication Studies major from Eugene, Ore. His weekly recap of LMU Athletics will be posted here every Monday allowing for a quick glance at the week that was in Lion Sports.

The heart and soul of LMU athletics in back with basketball season underway all across the country.

Friday night in front of a packed home student section, the LMU men's team put on a show, destroying Pacifica 108-49 with stat padding and slam-dunks abound. The 108 points was more than an LMU team had scored in two decades. In the Lions' first real test at SMU on Sunday, that offense was nowhere to be found as the Lions lost 73-58.

The women's basketball team opened up their season on a road trip throughout the Southwest this weekend. The Lions fell 79-51 at UTEP on Saturday in the first regular season game for new head coach Charity Elliott. LMU will look to salvage the trip tonight when the take on New Mexico St.

In their final weekend of play, the men's soccer team ended their season in style on a five game unbeaten streak. Friday, the Lions drew a 0-0 tie against Santa Clara who finished second in the WCC. In their final game on Sunday, LMU beat Saint Mary's 4-2 in a heated shootout, ending the year at 4-5-3 and tied for fifth in the WCC.

Volleyball also had a strong weekend, grinding out two key wins. The Lions beat No. 24 Pepperdine 3-1 in the final home match of the year to improve to 7-7 in conference play. In a non-WCC game Saturday, the Lions came back from down two sets to win in five on the road at Cal State Northridge.

Men's water polo went on the road last Thursday to end regular season play at Cal Baptist. The Lions barely came out on top 8-7, making it four wins in a row with three of those being decided by a single goal. The Lions are now 15-9 overall, heading into the WWPA Championships this week 

Both cross country teams competed in the NCAA West Regionals in Seattle, Wash. over the weekend. 10 of 14 LMU runners set personal records at the meet, with senior Sheree Shea finishing in 11th place and qualifying for the NCAA National Championships next Saturday.

Both tennis teams wrapped up their fall schedules this weekend with the men at the SoCal Intercollegiates hosted by UCLA and the women at the Jack Kramer Invitational in Palos Verdes, Calif. Both teams sent a handful of players to their respective events and are now off until January when their main spring seasons will begin. 

The Week That Was in Lion Sports

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This blog is written by Ray Ferrari, a sophomore Communication Studies major from Eugene, Ore. His weekly recap of LMU Athletics will be posted here every Monday allowing for a quick glance for the week that was in Lion Sports. 

Friday, one of the biggest nights every year in Lion Athletics occurred when LMU held its annual Madness at Midnight event. The night got fans excited for the upcoming basketball season, introducing everyone to the players of both the men's and women's teams. Players from both teams competed in a free throw contest, a three-point contest, as well as a dunk contest for some of the men. Along with showcasing the basketball talent, Madness was also an opportunity for the student body to see all of the school's Division I sports teams on display through dance competitions, which the softball team won. The night included food trucks and giveaways for students as well.

The women's soccer team had a huge weekend, earning six points through two conference victories. On Friday in Malibu, LMU destroyed then ranked #15 Pepperdine 3-0 getting all three goals in the first eleven minutes of play. Then at home Sunday, the Lions defeated San Francisco 1-0 after scoring 11 seconds into the first overtime period.

LMU Volleyball had an impressive weekend, also getting two much-needed wins. In the Northwest for the weekend, the Lions improved to 5-1 on the road this season as they swept Gonzaga Thursday and beat Portland in straight sets as well on Saturday.

An injury-filled men's water polo team continued to sink over the weekend, losing to two conference rivals. The #9 Lions had been on a roll with a seven-game winning streak before a series of setbacks led the Lions to drop matches to #1 USC a week ago and to #10 Long Beach St. and to #11 UC San Diego over the weekend.

In the final race before the WCC Championships, the men's and women's cross country teams sent four runners a piece to tune up at the Titan Invitational in Fullerton. The Lions did not have enough runners for the teams to place but will be in full force at the conference championship meet in Portland next weekend.

The men's tennis team competed at the ITA Regional tournament in Irvine over the weekend. Four Lions competed in singles and doubles events with the #7 seeded duo of Nicholas Bjerke and Sebastian Bustamante still alive in the doubles semifinals. In singles, Bjerke also advanced to the round of 16.

The women's tennis team was in San Diego for their ITA Regional tournament. April Bisharat and Reka Rohonyl both advanced to the round of 32 in singles competition while Kristine Kouyoumjian made it to the semifinals in the consolation bracket before the final two rounds were rained out.

The men's golf team went abroad last week for the Cabo Collegiate tournament in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. What was meant to be a three round event turned into only 18 holes of competition as day two could not be finished and day three never began due to rainy conditions. Tyler Torano's 72 was good for a tie for second place in the tournament with his back nine score of 33 good for the best nine-hole score in the event. The team finished in ninth place. 

The Week That Was in Lion Sports

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This blog is written by Ray Ferrari, a sophomore Communication Studies major from Eugene, Ore. His weekly recap of LMU Athletics will be posted here every Monday allowing for a quick glance for the week that was in Lion Sports. 

Two weeks away from the WCC Championships, the LMU cross country teams continued to look fast over the weekend. Amongst a strong field at the Chile Pepper Festival race in Fayetteville, Ark., the women's team finished in fifth place and the men's team received fourth place.

After seven consecutive wins, the ninth-ranked men's water polo team was put to the test Saturday against #1 USC. The big home crowd helped the Lions to a 1-0 lead at the end of the first period but the talent and depth of the visiting Trojans proved too much to handle as the Lions eventually lost 13-6.

The volleyball team got back on track Thursday with a win in straight sets over visiting Santa Clara. After six straight home matches, the Lions then started their stretch of two weeks of road games. On Saturday, LMU fell to #13 San Diego in three games. The weekend split sent LMU to 2-5 in the WCC.

Considering they played against a team that had not lost the previous eight games in #18 Santa Clara, the women's soccer team performed quite well over the weekend. On the road against the Broncos, LMU barely lost 1-0 as a late goal held up for the home team despite more shots on goal and corner kicks by the Lions. Then at home Sunday, the team picked up its first conference win against Saint Mary's in an offense-heavy 3-2 match.

Continuing to struggle, the men's soccer team lost another pair of games during the week. After jumping to an early lead Wednesday against visiting San Diego, the Lions could not hang on and eventually lost 2-1 in the two overtime periods. At San Francisco on Friday, some defensive mishaps led to two USF goals, sending the Lions to an unexpected 1-4-1 start in WCC play. The Lions will receive a much needed bye week now before returning to play in San Diego on October 24.

The women's tennis team played well on the road when they traveled to Tennessee last week for the Memphis Invitational. On Friday, all six Lions won their singles matches against opponents from UT Martin but lost 1-2 in doubles matches against the University of Memphis. Saturday, LMU went 2-4 in singles matches against Memphis and swept Drake in three doubles matches.  And on Sunday, the Lions went 5-1 in singles matches against Drake to wrap up a successful weekend.

In their first competitions of the year, the women's swim team came out to a fast start as they earned a share of first place in the PCSC Relays Saturday and dominated the PCSC Pentathlon Sunday, which were both held at Biola University in La Mirada. Calif. 

The Week That Was in Lion Sports - October 9

This blog is written by Ray Ferrari, a sophomore Communication Studies major from Eugene, Ore. His weekly recap of LMU Athletics will be posted here every Monday allowing for a quick glance for the week that was in Lion Sports.

The ninth-ranked LMU men's water polo team won all four games at the Claremont Convergence tournament last weekend, extending its winning streak to a season-best of seven games. The tournament was a brief break from the tough schedule of ranked teams the Lions have been playing and was also a way to build confidence and momentum heading into a match with #1 USC at home this Saturday.

The men's soccer team split its first home weekend of conference games. Friday, the Lions defeated Gonzaga University 2-1 (2OT), giving the team three points and its first conference win. Against the University of Portland on Sunday, the Lions got out to an early lead but the visiting Pilots kept plugging away before coming away with a 2-1 win.

After a successful fall preseason, the women's soccer team opened up WCC play at home against the University of San Diego on Sunday. The Lions dominated the shot count at 15-5 but the only shot that mattered was San Diego's goal in the 64th minute, which led to a 1-0 loss to the visiting Toreros.

Last week, the volleyball team continued its theme of getting hot early but failing to finish. Thursday, the Lions came out firing against visiting #16 BYU. But after winning the first two sets, BYU came out of the locker room determined, fighting back to win the next three sets and leaving with the victory. Saturday, LMU hosted Saint Mary's, a team the Lions defeated 3-0 in Moraga two weeks prior. However, the Lions could not do it again as the visiting Gaels won the match in four sets, dropping the Lions to a disappointing 1-4 conference record.

Both cross country teams continued their strong showings and fast finishes over the weekend. At the 20th annual UC San Diego Triton Invitational, the women got their second team victory of the season, while the men received an impressive second place finish.

The women's tennis team had a very successful opening weekend as they competed at the Cal State Fullerton Fall Intercollegiate tournament for their first event of the fall. LMU sophomore Tory Parravi won the tournament for the top flight singles competition, with other Lions playing well also.

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