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Old Gold & Black

Old Gold & Black

OPINION: Men’s Basketball just won’t back down
Abigail Taylor, Contributing writer • February 27, 2024

Overlooked but on the Move

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Wofford Women’s Tennis update

While Wofford athletics have been the focal point of national news in the past year, featuring the success of the football team at the FCS level and men’s basketball’s Top 25 placement in the AP Poll and NET ranking, the Women’s tennis team has gone largely overlooked. Despite the lack of attention, however, the team has experienced unprecedented success. Over the past five seasons, the team has finished with an average winning percentage of .441 and record of 9-12. 

Comparably, the non-conference portion of the 2019 season has the Terriers on a hot streak, sitting at an 8-3 record (.727 winning percentage). According to those involved in the program, there are a number of reasons for this success. Namely, the tightly-knit team dynamic has helped the players focus on their craft. Liz Massie ‘22 noted that the absence of team drama and negative energy has made for a great environment to play in.  

A product of Bilton School in Rugby, England, Massie also commented on her love for the close-knit campus as part of the reason she chose Wofford, saying, “Our coach is so supportive, she’s like a second mum.”  

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The feeling is reciprocated: “We have great team culture, great camaraderie and the team is really close. You can see it in how they cheer and support for one another, how they want each other to do well and get better,” said seventh year Head Coach Krissy Hall, “and you can see it off the court in the time they spend together, in the team dinners they have. I think it’s great. I think we are a family, and a lot of people campus know that too. 

Mentality is another factor that has played a large part in getting the team going this year. Taylors, SC native Lilie Steryous ‘22 emphasized the intensity of the matches and the headspace one must go to: “The mentality is important, it’s a very mental game. Especially when everybody is screaming on the court.”  

Massie said, “You could be a better player, but they’re [the opposition is] tougher.” While tennis is a team sport, its individual aspect adds a different element from more traditional team sports, according to the players.  

“A lot of it’s an individual win, but a big part is the team,” said Steryous. But for a team that has a healthy team chemistry, this is a good thing. Massie added, “You don’t feel nervous that you’re going to let down the team.”  

Coach Hall is enthusiastic about what the team has accomplished, and where they still have to go, saying, “We are off to a great start, and I think it’s been each and every girl pushing each other in practice every single day, and working together towards our goals.”  

The youth of the team has not proved a hindrance, with four freshmen and four sophomores constituting the majority of a squad that fields eleven in total. Hall said, “You can look at our roster and see that we’re really young. The majority of the girls on the team are freshmen and sophomores, which is super exciting. We definitely brought in some great talent over the past few years, and I just think it’s a whole team effort with everyone coming together and working towards our common goals.”  

In addition to the four true freshmen on the team, sophomore Kay Kluska transferred from James Madison University, giving the Terriers five newcomers in total. 

As the team wraps up non-conference play against UNC-Asheville and Gardner-Webb, the team prepares for SoCon action. The winner of the SoCon tournament is usually the only one to receive a bid to the NCAA tournament, and Coach Hall would love to see students turn out for the matches and support with the same enthusiasm they do for other sports. “Just come out and support us, come out and watch us, we have a lot of fun, we have a lot of fun, and if people come out they’d have a lot of fun as well.” The Terriers conference home opener is 2:00 p.m.. Thurs. Mar. 21 against ETSU.  

Written by Chalmers Rogland

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