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March 26, 2012
University Park, Pa. -
By Jeff Sattora, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff Writer
Being successful to different people can mean different things. It could be getting good grades, excelling in a sport or hobby, or even just having the chance to do something you enjoy. For Penn State tennis player Fernanda Perrotta, it could be described as all of the above.
For Perrotta, the senior economics major from Argentina, being successful on and off the court has been something that has been important to her all her life, and something she has succeeded at being each step of the way.
On the court, Perrotta, who began her college career at Arkansas, has been a strong presence for the Lady Lions squad, finishing this past fall with a strong 17-8 record, including 10-4 in singles matches.
“She is extremely talented and can play many different styles, said head coach Dawna Denny. “Her singles record has improved vastly compared to last year and she is playing higher in the lineup.”
Those strides have helped her to not only become a better player, but a leader on the team.
“Fernanda came in as a junior and automatically embraced a leadership role,” Denny said. “She adjusted beautifully in the classroom (3.67 GPA) and she has been a solid voice of reason for her teammates.”
For Perrotta, as great as she has been on the court, it’s that leadership and ability in the classroom that makes her the person that she is.
That inspiration seems to come from one person, arguably the greatest tennis player in history, Roger Federer.
“Roger Federer is just the best player of the tennis history. I love him,” Perrotta said. “He is so good inside and outside the court. Not many players get involve with charities like he does. He is an example in every sense.”
“That's what matters the most for me in life. I think trying to do things right outside the court is the best thing I can do,” she added talking about why it is important to be strong off the court as well. “It gives you a good feeling about yourself.”
As Perrotta looks to move forward beyond Penn State she has a few main goals in mind. On top of hoping to get her Ph.D. in economics, one of her other focuses is to continue in the game of tennis, possibly on the coaching level.
“I would like to coach in college because I would like to be part of the tennis college environment,” she said.
For Coach Denny, she is able to see a lot in her senior that would translate to the coaching level, not just in what kind of person she is, but also just how she plays the game.
“Fernanda pays attention and sees team dynamics,” Denny said. “As long as she remains open and flexible, she will become a great coach.”
Perrotta has been able to learn a lot from Denny to help her grow and possibly take on a coaching role someday.
‘I learned that it takes a lot of work to make things work,” Perrotta said. “I think she does a great job and she puts so much into it that it is being shown now in our season after a long time of hard work.”
Whether it is in the coaching world, the economics world, or something else, Perrotta will always strive to be successful.
And with an attitude and skills like hers, there is no doubt that success will come.
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