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Feb. 15, 2012
University Park, Pa. -
Head Coach Denny Denny:
Q: How would you say the season is going for you so far?
A: I think the last two matches have definitely been high points of the season so far. We started off a little bit slow with our first two matches against Hawaii and then played a great match against Baylor but they just showed themselves to be a better team. We had a couple good matches when we came back and Ohio State was the fifth match that we played. I feel like the team has bought into our program and we feel really good. We are trying to focus on positive things and growth and development within our game.
Q: Looking ahead, what do you think the schedule has in store for you guys?
A: We’ve got a tough schedule. There are always a lot of tough teams within the Big Ten. We’re definitely really excited. It’s really important for us to take it match by match.
Q: Can you elaborate a little bit on the Big Ten conference this year?
A: The Big Ten is always tough. We definitely have our team goals that we want to fulfill, not only outside of conference but also within conference. It’s always high intensity and we enjoy playing the schedule and these teams we know. We’ve got a couple rivalries in there, so we’re excited about it. Michigan did very well at the National Indoor; I don’t know where their ranking stands right now. Michigan and Northwestern have typically been at the top, but I feel like we’re making a push and Purdue jumped up there in the rankings. We’re excited about it.
Q: What are your goals for this season?
A: Our team goals are something that we kind of keep between ourselves but what we really focus on within our practices and our habits is developing our game and growing our game to get better day by day. We want to really see the big picture of the development within our team – whether it’s strategy, technical, tactical, it’s just really important for us to get the most out of our athletes with the time that we have.
Q: Who would you say is the most improved player this season?
A: It’s tough to tell – the jury’s still out on that one, which is a good problem to have. I feel like everyone is into developing their game. We have definitely seen sparks in different athletes in different ways. Fernanda (Perrotta) is a great testament to that; I feel like she has improved a lot this year, even compared to the fall. I’m just excited about the team. I feel like they are all into the development and it’s so important. It’s just been a pleasure coaching them. It’s been really enjoyable so far.
Senior Fernanda Perrotta
Q: As a senior on this team what would you say your role is?
A: As a senior, you have the responsibility to have more leadership and trying to have everyone fight every single point to the end. I think that every single person on the team believes that, so we are doing it as a team. I think the younger ones are looking at the seniors and are buying in and doing it as well with us.
Q: What do you think your success this season has done for the mental aspect of your game?
A: It helps me. When I have positive attitude, of course I’m going to play better. You can see that from the tennis I play because I play with more confidence, so it helps me. It helps the team as well, not only me. The team is playing better and with more confidence.