Jackrabbit tennis lacking a true home court

Zach Anderson

Zach Anderson

The SDSU tennis teams have several away matches each year due to the lack of an indoor court facility on campus. The Hillcrest courts, a few blocks from campus, are sometimes used by the SDSU tennis team, but they have to be shared with the Brookings High School players, recreational players and college students all at the same time.

“If SDSU got indoor courts we would be much more organized and dedicated as a team,” SDSU freshman Bryna Nasenbeny said. “We currently use one multipurpose indoor court and have to split up the team into different practice times in order to play. Being separate from the team in that way takes away from the feel of tennis as a Division I collegiate sport in which we are supposed to maintain practice all together as a team. I would be ecstatic if we got indoor courts.”

Having courts on campus would help alleviate the problem by allowing tennis to have more home matches and giving the team more practice space as well as providing courts for students.

“If SDSU got indoor courts it would really help in recruiting because we would have a good facility to practice in along with our really good travel schedule,” SDSU junior Corey Paluch said. “Also, having an indoor facility would give us the opportunity to practice more often, practice at different times of the day, and it would give us the opportunity to have the whole team practice at the same time. Our situation now is that we only have one court and our main training time is from six to nine in the mornings and only four people can play at a time.”

This lack of space makes practicing tough and new courts would help to give the team the space they need to practice with more than four people at a time.

“The courts on campus would be good for the students who wish to play recreational tennis as it would relieve the pressure on Hillcrest,” SDSU head coach Don Hanson said.

Family, friends and fans of SDSU tennis would be able to watch the team play at home.

“I think that new courts on campus would create a better opportunity for students to watch tennis and really get to understand the game,” Paluch said. “I think that on-campus courts would be really good for the players and also for the fans.”

This lack of space means lots of traveling for the team and no home matches. From Feb. 21-April 11, the men’s tennis team has been to Milwaukee, Wis., Shreveport, La., Orlando, Fla., St. Cloud, Minn., Tulsa, Okla., and Fort Wayne, Ind.

“I think it is really a good time being able to travel across the U.S. but it is a big disadvantage to always be at someone else’s home courts,” Paluch said. “It would be really nice to play in Brookings so friends and family could make it to more matches.”

The women’s team has been to Waterloo, Iowa, Ruston and Shreveport, La., Orlando, Fla., St. Cloud, Minn., Kansas City and Liberty, Mo., and Macomb, Ill., in a span of Feb. 20-April 19.

That’s six states for each team and nine different states altogether.

“It is hard traveling but the athletic department supports us well with great transport and good traveling conditions,” Hanson said. “It would be nice to play at home but we need an indoor facility more than outdoor to do that. The number-one priority is indoor courts.”

Indoor courts are planned to be part of the new Dykhouse Center when it is constructed.

“I do think that new courts on campus would increase the visibility of tennis and it would allow for the school, the students and most importantly our rival schools to take us seriously as a Division I sport,” Nasenbeny said.