What is your favorite aspect of tennis?
The competition. You play one opponent, two if it’s doubles, and you have to try to figure out how to defeat them. It’s a mental process. Plus, I like running all over the court.
When did you start playing tennis?
When I was 8.
Singles or doubles?
I like doubles more, but I’m better at singles. My mentality is the same as singles even when I’m playing doubles.
What’s it like playing an individual sport on a team?
I just try my best to win my portion of the match to help the team. I cheer on my teammates so they’ll win and we win overall. It’s a good concept, to play individually for a team. It’s fun to watch the team grow and develop throughout the season.
In junior tennis tournaments, no coaching is allowed. In college your coach can come on the court. Do you benefit from this or prefer being left to your own devices?
I probably prefer coaching, mainly for support rather than advice. It really helps to have someone there supporting you. Some advice does help, but it’s hard to change game styles mid-match.
What’s your best shot?
Either my first serve or forehand. I’m more of a baseline player, and my first serve is decently hard, but mainly I have good placement to set myself up for a return to my forehand.
What are your pre-match and post-match meals?
Before matches I eat lightly, maybe just a banana. After matches I go all out. I prefer steak, cooked medium-rare, with sticky white rice. Not like the white rice we have at Oberlin.
Why did you choose to come to Oberlin?
My grandmother went to Oberlin way back in the day. She’d talk about it, but I never actually thought about coming until Coach sent me a recruiting letter. He was really responsible for my coming here. He came to a tournament I played in Kalamazoo, Mi, and I saw that he had a real ambition to win. And Oberlin is a good school! It came down to a Division I school where I wouldn’t get much playing time, or Oberlin in Division III, where I play a lot and get to travel.
What are your favorite off-court activities?
Weight lifting, movies — I like Never Back Down — and bowling. Sometimes in Hawaii I like to go to the beach or just drive around with friends.
Did you have pets growing up?
I was never allowed to have pets because my dad didn’t want to take care of them. We had a fish for a bit, but even that was too hard to maintain. I’ve always wanted a dog.
What are your life aspirations involving tennis?
I’d like to join a men’s league team later. For now I want to qualify for the NCAA championships.