Traveling thousands of miles from home to attend college is not what many freshmen have in mind. But for the CSU tennis team's Anne Anderson, that was just what she wanted.
"I came to CSU because I knew someone who knew a player on the team," Anderson said. "And all the things I've heard about the state, like the mountains and Aspen."
Originally from Hadsund, Denmark, Anderson said the town of 500 residents does not have everything available to play tennis. Although a tennis club was started by Anderson's father, Niels Anderson, she had to travel to bigger cities to play against other opponents. But when she was not at home, Anderson did have a partner, she said.
"I started tennis at about age 7," she said. "One of my early opponents was my older brother, Christian, but we just played for fun."
Her experience playing tennis has been a factor this season for the Rams. She has gone undefeated in her last few matches.
"Anne Anderson is playing exceptionally well and has won her last few matches against nationally ranked teams," said head coach Jon Messick.
But being away from home is not easy for many freshmen, especially when a plane ticket home costs more than $1,000. But Anderson has coped with this with the help of her teammates.
"The thing that inspires me on and off the court is my team," Anderson said. "They make me want to fight for them."
Her team members agreed.
"We are all really close as a team," said tennis player Carla Pallares. "We are like a family."
But that does not mean going home does not enter her mind. From time to time she thinks about going home to be with her mother, Annett, her father and her older brother Christian.
"I get homesick every now and then," Anderson said. "But that is how it goes."
Anderson also has another support system outside her team.
"Tennis is a big part of my life," she said. "But my boyfriend also plays a big role."
This support system has helped Anderson throughout the year. While at the CSU she has posted a record of 15-4 in singles and 13-7 in doubles and has not been defeated in weeks. But what makes these numbers stand out is that over the last two weeks she has been playing with a case of tennis elbow.
Despite the wins, some losses do linger in her mind.
"Losing all the 10-point tiebreakers is difficult," Anderson said.
Difficult or not, Anderson has had success in her first season at CSU. In her rookie season, she has the set the second-highest singles win record in with .789 win percentage. Sanja Hansson had a .794 mark in 2002-03.
Undefeated in several weeks of play, Anderson will lead the Rams at the No. 3 position in the Mountain West Conference Tournament.