Rising sophomore and All-American Irina Falconi has agreed to blog for RamblinWreck.com this summer. She will keep Yellow Jacket fans up-to-date on her training as she prepares for her second season on the Flats.
July 31, 2009
Let’s start this again with another funny quote by my awesome doubles partner, Ashley Weinhold
Ashley: I’m freezing! Me: Yet, you’re still getting ice cream… Sigh.
Alright, so this morning started off a little later than usual. Maria and I were going to play our quarterfinal matches second after 10 a.m., which meant that we could warm up a little later, which also meant, MORE SLEEP!
After I woke up, I was pleasantly surprised by a phone call from Jeff Wilson, our Volunteer Assistant Coach. He called me from Austria to talk about the match against Coco, and the match I was going to play later in the day. After our great conversation, it was time to get ready to go.
When we arrived to the courts, the 10 a.m. matches were going on, so that’s when Maria and I decided to warm up. 40 minutes of warm up later, we were both ready to go. Maria and I hung out for a while before it was our time to get it on the courts.
Olga Boulytcheva was my opponent. Same scenario as yesterday—on a bad day she was 6’0″.
So the first set started with both of us firing. She started serving, and she held easily. After I made the return, she would make me look like a beginner with her ridiculously flat and hard strokes. I came back firing with a strong service game. It was going to be a holding game—or was it?
A pair of holds later, I finally get the first break for a 3-2 lead. We then break each other to get it 4-3 for me. She comes back with no fear with a break and hold—down 5-4. After a bad service game from me, the first set was hers. As usual, I didn’t freak out. I knew what I had to do—1. Keep it away from her forehand and 2. Hold my serve. Sounds easy, huh? Well, the 6-1 score might indicate that it was, but it definitely took some patience and work.
Final set. Here we go.
I started off serving and it didn’t go great. The third set was mostly a breaking game. She broke and then I broke, and it went on and on. After one too many breaks and no match points for either of us, a third set tiebreaker was going to be the decider.
We both were ready to play in the breaker. It was definitely tight. I had three match points against me that I was able to save due to another level of aggression. After having to switch sides twice, I took the match after a backhand error from her part.
After some Panera lunch, it was time for doubles.
Speak of nerve wrecking matches- Ashley and I had the pleasure of playing Yasmin and Maria in the doubles semifinals. In the first set, both teams were ready to go and we both wanted to win. After about five deuce games where the returners had to choose a side for a sudden death game point (confusing, I know), we brought the first set to a tiebreaker. After saving a couple of set points, we took the first set 7-6— 3 in the breaker. In the second set, we got our groove going and just continued with our game plan. We continued playing solid doubles, and we took the second set 6-2.
After a lap around the track, we headed home for some nice long showers and some good food.