Standing at 11-3 with eight matches left to play, the PLNU women’s tennis team is off to its best start in seven years. After beginning 2-2 with a highlight win over a Division I school in UC Irvine, the team went on a 9-1 run, including an active five-game winning streak, to reach the current state they are at now.
Team chemistry always tends to play a role in success, whether it be pushing each other through a tough stretch, or igniting a winning streak. For the women’s tennis team, it’s no different.
“Outside of the court, we’re really supportive to each other,” said senior Carolina Cuevas Bucio. “In doubles, we know how to play with our partners. We all practice with each other and we don’t have a preference.”
According to senior Nikki Newell, who has been with the team her entire college career, one noteworthy aspect of the team’s season is being able to find success against teams that aren’t as familiar.
“I feel like a lot of the schools we’ve been playing, we haven’t been playing in previous years,” said Newell. “And we’ve been doing really well, so it’s looking up.”
Along with UC Irvine, another unfamiliar foe that the team defeated was Biola, a new member of the PacWest. The team will also face new opponents in Arizona Christian and Emory, as well as a second matchup against Biola at home.
Postseason play appears to be in this team’s future, but whether or not a conference title can be claimed is another question. There is confidence, however, that the team has a change.
“I feel like if our team goes in feeling super pumped, ready, spirited and focused,” said freshman Madison McKay. “And we’re all supporting each other, then there’s nothing that’s stopping us.”