UW Tennis Ready To Go

Jan. 8, 2009

By Zach Ruby
The Daily

The UW men's and women's tennis teams are looking to improve on strong showings last season with emerging young talent and strong returners.

'I think we have a very competitive team this year and we have a lot of depth,' women's head coach Jill Hultquist said. 'We're going to continue on what we did last year when we had a winning record and got into the top 40. This year we want to continue to grow and get back into the top 30.'

The women's team will be relying on newcomers Denise Dy, Samantha Smith and Lina Xu as well as returning starters Venice Chan, Aleksandra Malovic and Joyce Ardies to try to push the team over the hump.

Overall, this year's women's team members have the attitude for greatness. They believe that they belong in the top 30 and are willing to put in the work to get there.

'This is one of the most positive teams I've had,' Hultquist said. 'They feel like they belong in the top 30 and they are working towards it.'

Last year's team experienced trouble with inconsistent play, but this year's athletes have been working hard during the offseason to try to overcome that shortcoming. Their first test will come Jan. 17 against Portland.

'I think the girls have been very serious about their goals, so I think we'll be ready for Portland,' Hultquist said.

The men's season will rest on the improvement of players already on the team, as their starting lineups will be made up entirely of returning players.

'These guys are making changes and improving, which is why I'm so eager to see it in action as we're playing other teams,' men's head coach Matt Anger said.

Martin Kildahl is expected to step up in a major way for the Huskies.

'The person who improved the most is Martin Kildahl, who's been moving up with us in the singles and doubles.' Anger said. 'Last year he had some trouble with his backhand, committing errors and wasn't able to come to net. Now his backhand has improved and he's able to come to net a lot. He's become a much more well-rounded player.'

Ultimately, the key for the Huskies this season is to stay focused and keep improving.

'I think the key for our guys will be to keep our eye on the big picture.' Anger said 'We are a young team and we want to do as well as we can to keep getting closer and closer to the top of collegiate tennis.'

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