By Tina Schrage
Lawrence University’s Women’s Tennis team fell short in last weekend’s match against Grinnell College despite the effort put in by each athlete. There were several close matches, but the team had difficulty tying up loose ends and grabbing a win for the team.
“I thought it was a good match,” junior Katie Frankel said. “We competed very well and had a couple of close losses. They had a couple of good players whom got the ball back one more time.”
Freshman Lilly Endsley continues to excel as the season moves forward. Endsley competed against Sydney Banach of Grinnell College and drew the game out to three sets, with an overall set record of 6-10. “A lot of the people on the team thought it was the best tennis they had played this season, so I think win or lose, we felt like we got good experience out of it,” freshman Annie Harnicar said.
Lawrence tennis has had a tough season so far. After the loss to Grinnell College, the Vikings have a record of 7-8 overall. Their Midwest Conference record is 2-5.
The Vikings tennis team’s season started out well, but as they moved forward, the teams they competed against—such as Grinnell and Cornell—increased in difficulty. The women’s team is focusing their energy and mindset on playing better to grab a spot in conference.
“It’s been challenging. I mean, we have had tough losses against close teams,” sophomore Lindsay Holsen said. “There were days when we felt like we could have played better against a team, but we just have not been able to pull through. However, we are still out there trying hard every time.” With conference only three matches away, the Vikings are working hard to achieve their goals.
“The goal would be able to make it to team conference, so we would have to finish in the top four,” Frankel added. “We would have to play well, but that is a pretty good goal for us.”
After starting over from scratch with only five returning players, the women’s tennis team hopes to continuously grow. Once this season ends, the focus will be on making improvements and building the team up. “This year we had only a couple of returning players whom were actually in the line up last year,” Frankel said. “Next year, everyone from the line up is going to be back, which is really exciting.”
As the season comes to a close, the Vikings are left with a bittersweet feeling. “I feel like tennis always goes by so quickly,” Harnicar stated. “It is definitely a mixed bag of emotions.”
“I am glad I got to play with a great group of people this year,” Holsen added. Although there are only four games left, the Lady Vikings will recover during the off-season and practice more during the Spring term to improve for next year.
“The amount of work you put in is very proportional to the award you receive,” Harnicar said. “You learn how important it is to fight for what you want.”
The women’s tennis team only has three matches left before they head to the Midwest Conference Championships.