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Hernandez Set to Become First in Her Family to Attend College

Sayda Hernandez didn’t begin to fully understand how far tennis could take her until she was being recruited.

The sport had always been something Hernandez just did for fun. She thrived on the competition and loved trying to improve each day.

Sayda Hernandez's Family Watched Her Sign with Indiana
© Contributed Photo

Although she rarely saw many other Hispanic girls playing tennis in the South Carolina area, Hernandez was never deterred. She would play in the park with her dad for hours, gaining confidence with every rally.

But once college coaches started offering her a scholarship, Hernandez gained greater clarity on the generational value of the sport.

The five-star senior will become the first in her family to attend college when she arrives at Indiana in the fall. Surrounded by her parents and younger siblings, Hernandez signed with the Hoosiers in November.

“I would have never received this opportunity if it wasn’t for tennis,” Hernandez said. "My dad told me I needed a good education and that he wanted me to be better than them and accomplish a lot of things. My parents always tell me they want something better for me and they don't want me to be struggling to make money."

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Page updated on Saturday, February 27, 2021
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