Tennis nationals in sight after fifth perfect season

Senior Katie Jesperson hits a drop shot.

Senior Katie Jesperson hits a drop shot.

Kaylyn Deiter

For the fifth year in a row, the Augustana women’s tennis team ended their season with a perfect undefeated record.

“My reaction to being undefeated for the fifth season in a row is a pretty rewarding feeling,” senior Liz Lewis said.  “It is a huge accomplishment individually and as a team, and it’s nice to know that hard work and dedication can really pay off.”

Coach Marc Kurtz believed his team achieved this level of success through an unprecedented amount of dedication.

“I think the winning is something that everyone wants but the big thing for us is realizing that the winning starts with being committed to giving it 100 percent in practice, and then good results will come with that hard work,” he said.

The Vikings head into post-season competition as the number-one seed in the NSIC tennis tournament with a goal of winning the conference championship, heading to regionals and ultimately making it to the national tournament.

Kurtz emphasized the importance of continued hard work and improvement at every practice.

“It’s real easy to get complacent but we have to be aware that other teams are working hard and they want it just as bad as we do,” he said. “We have to work harder than they do to achieve the success that we are going for.”

Senior Katie Jesperson credits coach Kurtz for pushing the team to compete at such a high level multiple years in a row.

“Marc has made sure we don’t take anything for granted and pushed us to keep working hard,” she said.  “I am very proud of the team and of Marc.  I feel very blessed to be part of such a great team.”

Kurtz added, “All I ask of the players is to give it everything they have for the whole practice and good things will come from that hard work.  I want them to be the best that they can possibly be and this work ethic, determination and commitment will translate to success far beyond their days here at Augustana.”