Talking with Hawaii Pacific's Lauren Conching
by Harry Cicma
, 18 January 2017
Follow Harry on Twitter
|Share: || || |
For the past ten seasons, the Hawaii Pacific Women's Tennis Team have advanced to the NCAA Division II National Championships. And for the most recent five seasons, they have done so with Lauren Conching as head coach. Conching has led the program to three Final Four appearances in her five seasons, and she was recognized as the ITA/Wilson Tennis National Coach of the Year in 2013.
This year promises to be another good one - last month, HPU was recognized as the No. 5 team nationally in the Oracle/ITA D-II National Rankings.
Harry Cicma of NBC Sports got the chance to talk with Conching about her experience coaching at HPU - and about her advice for junior players.
Questions and Answers Harry Cicma (HC): What do you enjoy the most about coaching college tennis?
Lauren Conching (LC): I love that I get the chance to be part of what is the best time in most people's lives. Hopefully I can make it a bit better - or more memorable - or both.
I also love watching how my players grow both as people and players throughout their time in college in Hawaii.
HC: What are your goals for the up coming season?
LC: My goal for this current team is to really just get better every single point, every game, and every match. We are a new team with only two returners from last year, so there is a lot that we need to tackle this year. But if we can keep getting better each time out, I think we can be very successful.
HC: What advice would you give a junior player who is looking to play college tennis?
LC: The best advice I can give a junior player is to work hard while you are still a junior. Learn how to really compete by playing a lot of tournaments. Also, learn what it means to be coachable - be open to suggestions, understand that criticism is to make you better, learn how to analyze your game and provide feedback to your coaches.
Finally, when a junior player decides that they want to play college tennis, know that there is a level of college tennis for everyone if you are realistic in your own abilities. I think so often, people only see the big D-I teams on TV and think, "I could never be a college athlete." But that isn't true - there are so many levels out there, and if you understand where you belong - or what is realistic - you can be a college athlete.
Leave a Comment
More College Coverage
Countdown: Amritraj Oversees USTA's College Commitment
As the Director of Collegiate Tennis for the USTA, Stephen Amritraj
is committed to raising the profile of and appreciation for college
tennis in this country. His focus is not just on juniors who aspire to
play at the next level, but on creating community connections and fan
bases for the hundreds of collegiate teams, from junior colleges to
Division I. Colette Lewis of ZooTennis.com talks with Amritraj about
many topics around college tennis.
CWRU's C.J. Krimbill Receives NCAA Today's Top 10 Award
Recent Case Western Reserve University graduate and former men's
tennis player C.J. Krimbill received the NCAA Today's Top 10 Award,
recognizing former student-athletes for their successes on the field,
in the classroom and in the community at the Honors Celebration during
the NCAA Convention in Nashville, Tennessee in January.
Virginia Wins ITA National Indoor Team Title
When you think of teams that are really great at playing indoor
tennis, the top two that would come to most people's minds are
Virginia and Ohio State. Coming into the ITA National Team Indoors,
Virginia and Ohio State had made a combined 11 finals appearances over
the previous 12 years, so it shouldn't have been a surprise when they
stood on opposite sides of the net on Monday morning. In the end, the
Cavaliers brought home the hardware.
About Harry Cicma
When it comes to college tennis, Harry Cicma is your man. Cicma
covers tennis and other athletic stories for
writing articles and producing video segments.
He is co-founder and host of World Tennis
a weekly tennis show on NESN, and host of of Tennis Live Radio's
Cicma competed as a junior in USTA/New England and went on to play
college tennis at Rutgers University. As a professional, Cicma
competed at the ATP Newport tournament and the San Jose Siebel Open.
He reached a career-high #75 in the ATP doubles team rankings and
#1262 in the ATP Entry System.
In media, Cicma has run the gamut. He has worked for NBC, CBS, ABC,
ESPN, FOX Sports Net, the Tennis Channel, and World Team Tennis.
Cicma has announced NCAA sports as well as the US Open Tennis
Championships on both TV and radio.