2007-08 Women's Tennis Blog
Christine Bader and Stephanie Kebler give fans a behind the scene look at MSU tennis.
Entry No. 4
Friday, Feb. 22 - Sunday, Feb. 24
The women's tennis team had a great weekend when we traveled to Bristol, Tenn. We played UNC-Charlotte and East Tennessee State. It was our first match up against UNC-Charlotte and our first opportunity for some revenge against ETSU. Last season we lost a close one, 4-3, to the Bucs, and we spent a lot of hours training for that match-up. Getting to Bristol was just as much of a grind as the matches. After a couple layovers and a early morning bus ride, we were ready to depart for Bristol. Our team was very prepared for our competition, but no amount of training prepared us for having to fly in an ancient propeller plane. But after rearranging for weight distribution and kicking an unsuspecting couple off the plane (due to weight distribution and wanting to get the plane off the ground) we were able to start propelling to Bristol. Our team is not known for being good fliers, so I couldn't help but point out that the emergency exit door had been opened before...and by the looks of it, more than once!
We landed safely in the hidden gem that is the Tri-City airport, and were off to the practice courts. Despite heading south, the weather was chilly and so were the courts. But thankfully, the athletic club had a "Sure Flame", a glorified blow torch the size of an outdoor propane tank, and it literally shot out a ball of flames. You've got to love the simplicity of the south...its cold...so start a fire.
We came out hard against UNC-Charlotte, and posted an impressive 7-0
victory. It was exactly the momentum and encouragement we needed to win our
match against ETSU. Our match against ETSU started off strong. We posted
good wins at 2 and 3 doubles to secure the doubles point, and were able to start
singles up 1-0. Christine Bader had an impressive and very decisive win at
No. 1 singles, a crucial point, after myself and Manon Noe lost hard-fought
matches at 2 and 3 singles. It was tied 2-2, and we still had 4,5,6 to finish.
Lindsey Lonergan pulled out an amazing come-from-behind third-set win, and
Ana Milosavljevic came back strong after coming up short in the first
set. Our freshman and new transfer Ally Wickman also cruised through her
match to make it 5-2. Happy with our win, we couldn't think of a better way
to celebrate than making a trip to Sonic (amazing fast food), and then going back
home to MSU. So after another propeller plane (same one), more layovers and a bus ride, we were back in East Lansing and ready for our next challenge...Marshall.
Entry No. 3
Friday, Feb. 1, 2008
The threat of a blizzard and 12 inches of snow did not stop our team from traveling to the warmer weather. After arriving in North Carolina some of the girls went to the men's Illinois vs. Duke match. It was a close match and the Spartans helped cheer Illinois (a fellow big ten team) to a 4-3 victory over the Blue Devils.
Saturday, Feb. 2, 2008
Murphy, Frenchface (Noe) and I warmed up in the morning at UNC, to get our bodies moving and ready for the afternoon match. We drove the scenic route and saw the campus of UNC. After hitting, we came back to our luxurious hotel suites. A jacuzzi, king-size bed, and living room with a couch was relaxing. We faced UNC Greensboro. Before our match we stopped and had McAllister's for lunch. Some of the girls contemplated how many carbs are actually in a baked potato! Ha! During the match we took the doubles point. Frenchie and Whit (Wilson) played an amazing doubles match and got off the court very quickly. Ana and Lindsey were down 1-4 and came back to win the point for the Spartans. Frenchie, Lindsey, Kebler, and Murphy won their singles matches. I was very impressed with Murphy's 6-0, 6-0 match. Total domination! The final match score was 5-2. Also, It was Coach Perkins' birthday. The best present we could give her besides embarrassing her twice was the W! After our song and dance for Erica we headed back to get some food and sleep.
Sunday, Feb. 3, 2008
On Sunday we faced off against UNC, the No. 17 ranked team. In doubles we came out very strong with good energy, but ended up losing the point to some talented teams. Then in singles we all came out swinging. The highlight of the daywas Kebler's win against the No. 72 ranked player in the country, Austin Smith. Murphy and I had really close second sets. Everyone on the team competed very hard with a positive fighting spirit. It was a good way to end the weekend. On Monday, we made the journey home to East Lansing. All weekend we used Erica's tomtom in order to navigate around. On this trip the team learned a lot more about Ally and her fear for the "tomtom killer." She is always the first to say, "Thanks for your help!"
GO GREEN! GO WHITE! GO STATE!!
Entry No. 2
Thursday, Sept. 20, 2007
Our lovely trip to Texas began with a very early morning. Waking up at 3 a.m., Coach Perkins, Whitney, Michelle and I headed to the Detroit Airport. All of us soon learned that Michelle is not a morning person and needed a large cup of coffee and diet coke in order to fall back asleep on our second plane ride.
Arriving in Lubbock, Texas, reminded us of the Midwest - flat. We explored the town of Lubbock and found a Walgreens and Buffalo Wild Wings. After a filling lunch, we headed off to the practice courts and then to meet our housing family - the nicest people ever - the Fowler's. My teammates and I were exhausted, to say the least, and ended up falling asleep on the floor scattered around our luggage. That night, the Fowler family took us to a great Italian restaurant, Orlando's. We soon learned that the two Fowler boys, Austin and Christian, were quite characters and had an interesting reaction to the spiciness of their chicken.
Friday, Sept. 21, 2007
Day one of the tournament started off with doubles. Michelle Murphy and I won our first round as well as Whitney Wilson and her partner from Texas Tech, Gozde Unkaya. Losing my first singles match in a 10-point tiebreaker, I was eager to return to the court and I won my second match against Texas State, 6-1, 6-2. Whitney won her first match vs. Air Force, 6-4, 6-1 and lost the second against Texas Tech. Unfortunately, Michelle lost both of her matches but had some great fights and competed extremely hard.
Saturday, Sept. 22, 2007
The three of us were excited for the competition and the opportunity to prove ourselves in day two. Whitney and Gozde won both of their doubles matches and won their flight! Michelle and I sought some revenge by defeating the two girls we lost to in singles of day one, but fell short losing in the final to a very talented Texas Tech team. After doubles, the Spartans went 3-0 in singles to finish the tournament. I defeated Samantha van der Drift, 7-5, 6-1. Michelle whooped up on a girl from NCTC, 6-3, 6-1, while Whitney Wilson won, 6-1, 6-4, against the next Venus Williams. After the matches, we rushed back to watch the Spartans beat up on Notre Dame. Overall, a great day for the Spartans!
Sunday, Sept. 23, 2007
On Sunday, the four of us returned home to East Lansing, thankfully alive! During our life-threatening flight, our little plane got too close to a bigger plane, and let's just say it had the effect of a big boat with a little boat in the water. Anyway, we were not very happy with the air traffic control in Dallas, but were thrilled to get home and more importantly, thrilled to still be alive.
Overall, The Scarborough Specialties Open was a great event; all three of us had a great opportunity to compete in a lot of matches. We played with great energy and Spartan spirit! I am very excited for this season; the freshmen are great assets to the team.
Come cheer us on Saturday and Sunday at the Spartan Invitational.
GO GREEN! GO WHITE! GO STATE!!
Entry No. 1
Friday, Sept. 14, 2007
Hey MSU fans! We are all really enjoying our time here in Virginia. After flying into Richmond on the smallest plane Northwest had to offer, we made our way to Williamsburg. We shopped, ate and took advantage of all the photo opportunities in Colonial Williamsburg. Then we headed off to the practice courts before meeting our wonderful host Bonnie!
William and Mary has an amazing campus - despite the intense humidity - with great facilities, not to mention a spectacular staff! The tournament is very competitive with some of the best players and teams the East Coast presents. The Tribe, however, finds ways to lighten the competitive atmosphere with practical jokes and crazy dances.
The tennis has been great, and our team is already learning and improving. Ana, Manon and I had a doubles matches and two singles matches today. Ana and I lost a hard fought doubles match to Old Dominion, but we looked strong and are confident going into our two rounds of doubles matches tomorrow. Manon is paired with Arkansas' Melissa Hoffmeister, so they continue their doubles tomorrow morning as well. Our freshman French import Manon also had two amazing singles wins. After a solid premiere against Princeton, she had a hard fought three-setter against Maryland. After switching courts due to the setting sun and then inside because of rain, she finally won at the indoor center 6-1 in the third.
Then it was off to carb load at a local Italian restaurant before passing out after such a long day! All our matches have been hard fought and competitive, and we can see improvement after every match. Tomorrow the action starts at 8 a.m., but the forecast says rain; it's actually pouring down outside right now. Let's hope the weather permits play!
Saturday, Sept. 15, 2007
MSU women's tennis had another successful day in Virginia! After dragging our incredibly sore bodies out of bed at the crack of dawn, we all posted very good doubles wins. Ana and I beat Boston College 8-1 and Manon had a successful doubles round with her partner from Arkansas. In the second round of doubles, Ana and I had a tough loss to Marshall; despite our best efforts and overcoming a 0-3 start, we fell 8-6.
Today the Spartans won two out of three matches in singles play. All of us played incredibly tough matches. Ana played a great 10 point tie break to win her match against Princeton and I had a good win against Maryland 4-3 to advance to the Flight C consolation finals. Manon once again was the last match on court at the end of the day against Virginia in Flight D semifinals! After a hard fought first set loss, she rallied back in the second to win the tiebreaker 7-3. Even though she played tremendously, she lost the third set 6-1.
After battling the humid and windy conditions all day, we are exhausted! We finished the day at a local sports bar, where Frenchy learned a new English word - alligator! Too bad she learned it after she had just eaten it as an appetizer. Oh well, she liked it! I didn't think we were far enough south to start eating such food, but oh well! We're not in Michigan anymore.
Once again we are all going to be sleeping by 9:30 p.m.! We need to rest up; we all have another round of singles tomorrow before heading back home to EL!
Check back with us next week when Christine Bader recaps the adventures of traveling to Texas Tech's tournament in Lubbock, Texas!