Feb. 21, 2006
Fans – Make sure to click the above photo gallery link to view Chris’ pictures from the Seattle trip. If you would like to send Chris an email or comment, Click here
I am sorry it has taken me so long to write. The last couple of weeks have been hectic but I promise to do a better job of logging entries each week. Between school, traveling, practice and playing I hardly have time to do much of anything!
I do have to apologize if this entry is a little short. I have been very ill the last couple of days and we took the redeye flight from Seattle to Tallahassee this morning so let’s just say all I can think about is sleeping!
We had a really great time in Seattle and I believe our team competed with a lot of heart. We left on Wednesday afternoon and flew nearly six hours to Seattle. When we arrived there it was quite cold outside but the city was amazing. We immediately grabbed our bags and headed to the indoor tennis facility on the campus of the University of Washington for a light workout. During that time my doubles partner, junior Ytai Abougzir, started feeling really bad so he didn’t get to workout. I knew he was sick but in a matter of days I would soon understand exactly what he was going through. Anyway, after working out we headed to the Crowne Plaza Hotel in downtown Seattle. All of the 16 teams competing in the 2006 USTA-ITA National Team Indoors stayed there so it was cool seeing players from other teams.
On Thursday, we practiced in the morning and then went to a banquet later that evening at UW. I felt really honored to be playing at the national indoors because only the top-16 teams in the nation get an invite. I was also happy to be at the national indoors considering this was the first time Florida State made an appearance. Although this is my last year, it’s my hope that FSU returns each season!
At 5:45 a.m. Friday morning, the phone started ringing and I knew it was time to get up for the match! We arrived at the courts around 7 a.m. to prepare for a team that would eventually make it to the finals of the tournament – Pepperdine. We really competed hard but came up on the short end of the match. In doubles, Ytai and I did not get to finish which was disappointing considering we were up 7-5 against undefeated Doerner and Andre Begemann. I played at the No. 3 singles slot but once again I did not finish. I do have to say that the match against Pepperdine will only better prepare us down the road in ACC and NCAA play. They are one of the better teams in the country and playing them allowed us to gain some valuable experience. Friday afternoon we rested and then went to dinner at the Cheesecake Factory. Afterwards some of the guys looked around downtown but I was drained so I headed back to the hotel.
Saturday we had another match at 8 a.m. against South Carolina and it turned out to be the best day we had in Seattle! Unfortunately, Ytai felt worse and worse so he was unable to compete against the Gamecocks so I was paired with junior Jason Hood at No. 1 doubles. Jason and I are roommates and good friends so it was fun playing with one another. Once again, I did not finish my singles or doubles matches but thanks to our freshman our team knocked-off No. 10 South Carolina, 4-1. Our team played the best we have all season and we had a lot of energy and enthusiasm. Later in the afternoon, our coaches took us to the Seattle Space Needle which was quite an experience. We rode an elevator to the very top and took pictures overlooking the city and mountains. Afterwards our team finished the evening by attending a dinner at the University of Washington.
On Sunday, our last day in Seattle, I knew we had a tough match against No. 8 Baylor. Jason and I played at No. 2 doubles and once again we did not finish. In singles, I faced the No. 1 player in the nation, Lars Poerschke, and fell short to him. Our team eventually lost 4-0 to the Bears but once again we gained some valuable experience.
We left Seattle on Sunday evening at 10:45 p.m. and flew all night and arrived in Tallahassee Monday at 10 a.m. All in all, we had a great time at the National Indoors and our team chemistry is better than ever.
Well, before I go I’d like to remind everyone that we have a match at home on Saturday against Alabama. It starts at 1pm and we’d love to see everyone out there! Thanks again for all the support and Go `Noles!
Until next week,