Good practices helping women’s tennis

By Danielle Brown

Women’s tennis is off to a 2-2 start this season and, if the team’s practices are any indication, it is set to be a much more improved team than it was last season.

The Huskies went 11-9 last year, but ended the season with a five-game losing streak, dropping six of their last seven games. It can be easy to judge a team by wins and losses, but many people don’t get a chance to see how a team prepares throughout the week.

The Huskies usually start practice by taking laps around the track at the Chick Evans Field House. Conditioning is crucial in a sport like tennis, and the team always makes sure to make it a focal point of its practices.

The team follows its lap-running by working on strength exercises, doing obstacle-type line drills. The drill is set up like a military obstacle course and the Huskies use ladders to work on agility, running through them and working on their footwork.

Head coach Tanya Gombera then goes over what she feels the team needs to improve on, which can change on a daily basis. She said that although it tends to change, the team likes to practice doubles rather than singles, before working on the little things such as consistency and depth. Lastly, the team works on serving with the main goal being to get higher serve percentages.

The Huskies have finished with winning records just twice in the last 10 seasons, but Gombera looks to have the team headed in a positive direction in just her second season. The team is 13-11 since she took over, and her practice techniques seem to be paying off. The team may not become dominant or dangerous in just one year, but if it is able to keep at its current pace, the future has a chance to be very bright.

The Huskies will look to move back over .500 for the season this week, facing off against Cleveland State University at 11 a.m. Saturday in Rockford.