Feb. 10, 2012
Cadet Third Class Michael DePauw interviewed freshman women's tennis player Tiffany Tran after she was named the Mountain West Player of the Week on Feb. 8.
Q: How do you think you have adjusted to playing Division I tennis and what are some differences you see at the next level of the college game?
A: I think I have adjusted quite well to playing Division I tennis. The team aspect of college tennis is amazing. It's definitely a completely different experience from junior tennis. I love our team and the fact that we are always 100% there for each other. Also, coach Kim Gidley and (assistant coach) Nick Dargene have been a huge part of my success. They have both been outstanding in developing all of our games and supporting us all.
Q: What does being named Mountain West tennis player of the week mean to you?
A: Being named Mountain West tennis player of the week means a lot to me especially during my freshman year at the Academy. The Academy challenges every cadet and I am glad to be doing well in the conference while further improving and strengthening myself here.
Q:When you won the deciding match in a 4-3 win over UTEP by coming back from 5-1 down in the third set and saved four match points, what was your mind set knowing that those odds were against you?
A: My mind set during the entire match was to fight and persevere no matter what the circumstances. Each of our matches are equally significant and I knew that I had to do my part and be accountable for my own match. During the second set of the match when I was down match point all I could think about was making sure she never won the last point. My past experiences in matches and the quote from John Wooden, "It's not so important who starts the game but who finishes it." Our team spirit and fight really helped push me through as well when I finally realized that I was in the deciding match. It was definitely a moment to remember for me when I won match point and all my teammates cheered and came in for a group hug.
Q: How do you think the team has performed so far, and what are some expectations the team has for the remainder of the season?
A: So far our team performance has been awesome, and this is just the beginning. We have the depth and talent to do amazing things this season. We leave everything on the court whenever we play and we fight to the end. I feel that we can definitely win the first round conference match to become one of the top four in the conference this season, and become nationally ranked for the first time.
Q: If you could play in any of the four Grand Slams, which would it be and why?
If I could play any of the Grand Slams it would be a pretty close decision between the U.S. Open and the French Open. I want to play in the French Open because I'd love to go to Paris and use the skills I have been learning in French classes at the Academy....and clay courts are a lot of fun to play on! The winner though is definitely the U.S. Open because it's our county's Grand Slam and there is a huge significance in playing at our home court with the exciting crowds in New York.
Q: Do you prefer to play singles or doubles with your partner Christine Molina?
A: This is a tough question because I really love both singles and doubles. Singles is a lot of fun and has its own challenges. My partner Christine is also such an incredible player and person that I love playing doubles with her. I guess on this one I'd have to say that it's a tie!