Mar 242004
Authors: Sports Staff

It took a season of preparation and a trip to the biggest club

tennis tournament in the nation for the members of CSU club tennis

to learn something very important: they need work.

A week prior to Spring Break two eight-member, co-ed teams

composed each of four males and four females traveled to Daytona

Beach, Fla., to compete in the USA Team Tennis Nationals. After two

days of the pool play team-A earned a birth to the Bronze (third)

bracket of the four-bracket tournament field, while team-B reached

the Daytona (fourth) bracket. Team-A went on to the semifinals in

the Bronze bracket before falling to Clemson while team-B faltered

in the first round of Daytona play.

For both teams the tournament posed their first brush with tough


“We were surrounded by competitive, tough teams,” said team

president Piper Morrell. “We noticed we have to work on quite a few

things next year. Hopefully we’re prepared. It was definitely a

learning experience.”

Adding to the experience was the clay courts on which the

tournament took place.

“This was the first time for a lot of players on clay,” Morrell


She added that the humidity slowed the ball and forced the

high-altitude players to change their style of play.

“Playing at sea level is a lot different,” Morrell said. “At

elevation the ball moves fast, but the humidity slows it down at

sea level.”

The trip for the team was exhausting both physically and

financially, Morrell said.

“This was our first time going and our club has a limited amount

of money,” she said. “It took a lot of fundraising and each player

had to pay a lot of money (to go).”

A lack in funds is also why the team is unable to accommodate

all the students anxious to join.

“We had 130 people turn out for tryouts,” Morrell said, “but we

only have four courts for players.”

Adding to the teams’ frustration is the fact that participation

at other schools is minimal, leaving the level of competition below


“There is a lot of participation here and little funding,”

Morrell said. “Other schools don’t have our level of participation

and that makes competition hard to find.”

The teams will take on more local competition next month in a

two-day, quadrangular tournament April 24 and 25 in Boulder against

Air Force, Colorado and UNLV.

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