Falcons open fall season at Colorado Challenge
Sept. 19, 2002
The Air Force women's tennis team begins its fall season this weekend with the Colorado Challenge at the University of Denver. The Falcons join the other three Division I schools from the state Friday, Sept. 20 through Sunday, Sept. 22 at the Stapleton Tennis Pavilion.
Air Force returns six of its top eight players from last year's team, which produced a 15-12 record and a fifth-place finish at the Mountain West Conference Championships.
Headlining the list of returners are seniors Heather Shelby and Kelli O'Bryant. Shelby had an outstanding doubles season last year, combining with junior Gina Black for a 23-11 overall mark and a 20-6 dual match record at the No. 2 position. The San Diego, Calif., native enters the 2002-03 campaign with 48 career doubles victories, the most among active Falcons. Shelby split time between the Nos. 2 and 3 singles spots last season, and won the No. 3 match against Utah in a super tie-breaker to help Air Force upset the Utes, 4-3, in the fifth-place match at the MWC Championships.
O'Bryant has battled injuries as well during her stint at the Academy, but played a full spring season as a junior, recording a 13-19 overall singles record and an 11-11 doubles record. The Colorado Springs product has been named to the MWC's all-academic team in each of her three seasons. She enters her final season at AFA with 36 career singles victories and 40 doubles wins.
Kim Gidley enters her fifth season as head coach of the Falcons and has a career record of 62-47. She is tied for third on the school's all-time wins list and needs five more to pass Bob Swanson and move into second place. Gidley has been honored by the United States Professional Tennis Association as the Intermountain College Coach of the Year twice in her four years at the Academy.
2002 Colorado Challenge Schedule (Air Force matches)
Friday, Sept. 20
Saturday, Sept. 21
Sunday, Sept. 22
Directions to Stapleton Pavilion