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William and Mary

Tribe Women's Tennis Blog

Williamsburg -

Hope Johnson

January 28

Well as the first week of spring competition for the tribe comes to an end, there has been more than enough excitement to fulfil all of my freshman expectations. After a great week of practice, we began the extreme sport, (based on the popular computer game tetris) of fitting twelve athletes plus bags, into a 12-seater minivan. Thanks to Toni's expertise we managed it with decided ease. This was the real first win of the season. After making friends with the most helpful facility manager Brian, Meredith took us to the delightful whole foods, where I duly took twice as much food as I could comfortably eat, (couldn’t let my reputation down) while Marlen may have gained her own reputation as over 20 of the complimentary lollipops went missing! The team had a fiery talk before getting a good nights rest in before the tough competition against the no.7 Duke the next day.

It is always important to know that in college tennis, anything is possible, and I hope that Anik and I managed to prove that by defeating the 4th ranked doubles team in the nation in our debut match of season. It was the most incredible feeling to have done that for the team, and we hope many more wins to come. Despite the good start, Duke proved too strong throughout for us, but I am sure that this first experience has strengthened our team spirit and the knowledge that we can defeat anyone in our paths. No matter of the somewhat dubious rankings!

The team then took on the no. 74 Wisconsin Badgers (really) at home on Sunday morning, which incidentally was also the lovely Marlen’s 21st birthday. I can honestly only apologize to everyone watching either of my matches for causing multiple heart attacks and defining the term “winning ugly”. However what we all decided is that the most important part of that phrase is the “winning” part, and that is what the superb team spirit gained us on this day, winning our first home match 4-3! The support from Syd’s mum, Syd, Tori, Jeltje and Lauren in addition to the always fantastic support we get from all of our fans was immense and had a great impact on the day. We are now preparing for getting on the road once more to the sunny climes of Florida for the ITA kick off weekend. Here we go tribe!

Quotes of the week:

“ I must have a really weird face” - Marlen

“If you need any clarification verifying if she’s 21, we do the day before the month in Europe and since today is the 23rd, and that says 90, and its 2011, that makes her 21.” - Nina

“Look there’s a deer!” – Hope
“I don’t care about deer. I care about police.” – Toni

“ I see them! I see them with food!....the best way to see people!” - Hope


Anik Cepeda

January 20

At this point you are probably finishing up the last few pages of Hope’s first blog entry and more than thrilled to sit down once again for a detailed story telling of pre-season running, weights, and lovely consistency drills. Arriving in Williamsburg was half the battle for some…there is a certain nightmarish trip that I am struggling to recall at the moment. Is suppression or repression the term used to describe purposefully forgetting a certain unnecessarily long and horrific plane journey? (Hope says “plane journey” rather than plane trip or flight). Either way, the Tribe made it safely to Williamsburg ready to work, cook, and celebrate. Our week of two-a days was topped off with a rather unique “show-down” event hosted at the MNTC this past Saturday. Rather than bore you with the particulars I’ll just say that we learned a few lessons from Professor Robert Vinson (who took his perfect record and the rest of Nina’s birthday cake home as valuable trophies). Later on, Katie, Hope, Marlen, and I focused our newly acquired strength and conditioning on inflating balloons for Nina’s 21st birthday. Celebrating in style, Nina blew out the candles to her German cake/ bread/ pastry thing amidst a glorious Packers victory. The Packers (my team) are playing the Bears (Katie’s team) next Sunday. I think you’ll find it appropriately entertaining to engage in a Packers v Bears discussion with Katie during the next few days. She is VERY defensive … similar to her beloved team’s playing style. Anyways, bellies filled with German cake/ bread/ pastry we found our way “home” to rest. The resting will come to an abrupt end as school begins tomorrow and we realize that watching five episodes of Modern Family is no longer possible. Despite not being particularly excited for schoolwork, classes, tests etc. I can tell you one thing we are itching to begin…Tribe Tennis! Our season starts up 10 a.m. sharp at Duke this next Saturday, January 22nd. Our first home match is this next Sunday, January 23rd, at 10 a.m. vs Wisconsin. Be there or be square. GO TRIBE!!

Quote Sequences of the Week:

“Are you eating candles?” – Marlen (to Hope)

“Are you fighting with broad swords or are you fencing?” – Nina (as Hope and I picked up Katie’s Wii remotes to try out sword fighting)

“I’m so motivated now…” – Marlen
“To play tennis?” – Anik
“Noo, fingerboarding” – Marlen

“This day will live in infamy” – Tori


Hope Johnson

January 10

So, fall semester is over, and I thought that I would add a bit of a UK twist to the blog! Now I am more than aware that my writing skills do not compare to Anik's witty prose, however I will do my best to give you a slightly alternative view on the fall semester! A quick introduction, I am Hope, I am a tall British freshman, and I am constantly hungry. These are the most important things you should initially know about me, as you may have deduced from Anik's wonderful blogs throughout the last glorious four months!

As a foreign freshman, I had a few worries before hitting the burg....would I find friends quickly, would I get on with the team, would I find my way around campus fine, however I was quick to find out that my most pressing concern was going to be how a pale English girl, used to the cloud and rain of the UK was going to deal with the alien 90 degrees temperature and obscenely high humidity that Virginia was throwing at her........combined with a considerable lack of air con in her dorm room! I was quick to find that I was surrounded by a terrific bunch of freshmen from all over the world who I feel I must introduce to you all. Marivick Mamiit and Sydney Smith may both be slightly vertically challenged, (I am allowed to say this as I am vertically challenged in the opposite way to the point of severe coordination dysfunctions!) however make up for it with character and attitude on court! Sydney is the most loveable, yet occasionally gullible (but in the best of ways....I mean I guess it is possible that they don't have toothbrushes in England....) person I have every met, and I do not know where we would be without her one track peanut butter and dance party mindset. Jeltje joins me in the opposite, European vertically challenged group, however does not have the coordination problems that I regularly face ( I promise you doors and showers just jump out at you). She always has a cheeky smile on her face, with the exception of when I witnessed her seeing her History of Africa text book and reading list for the first time, and has humbled us all with her serve, single handed back hand and diving volleys on the court.

Semester started well with a successful Tribe Invitational, as usual I became preoccupied at the first sign of food.....just how many different types of bagel are there? The freshmen all discovered the wonders of study hall and academy, I feel that battling through this together has prepared Sydney, Jeltje, Marivick and I for any tests that spring tries to throw at us (we were of course helped by the upper classmen's inspirational texts throughout these trials). We all hit the road for the UVA invitational, which although may have given us a few more areas to work on tennis wise than wanted, definitely provided experiences and team camaraderie like never before. Highlights involved watching Marlen transform into the Michelin Man using only ice bags, Katie rap to Eminem in a helium induced voice, and Meredith doing a (well I have no idea WHAT kind of dance this was) dance in a car park in Richmond. I should note now that yes, I say things differently, car park instead of parking lot, boot instead of trunk, trousers instead of pants, handbag instead of purse, football instead of soccer, and to the annoyance of a lot of Americans I will apologise in advance that I will not be converting to the American way just yet!

As I arrived on campus I remember smugly saying that I religiously never study after 10.30pm and always get a full nights sleep, I can see in hindsight every single upper classman gleefully rubbing invisible hands in their heads just betting on when I first have to study until midnight, and still be awake for sprints at 6.15. And as the semester went on, as predicted, the combination of wonderful 7am running with Toni, plus mid terms and presentations, left me with only one choice. Perfect the fifteen minute nap. Now the fifteen minute nap is an art, and I am sure that every athlete at William and Mary has perfected the ability to fall asleep in the matter of nano seconds, sleep in bright lights, fully clothed, and remember to set the all important alarm!

October approaches and following mine and Anik's début on the International circuit, supported by a full tribe team no less, we head to regionals in Norfolk, Va. Despite having some interesting first round wins, and some more disappointing losses to seeded Uva players, we DID find the most amazing sandwich shop, are there really that many bagels AND sandwiches? We also got to witness a few brand new things, a mortified Lauren watched on as an unnervingly unembarrassed English girl gallop round a restaurant proclaiming “ the British are coming, the British are coming, Long live the queen”, to mine and Jeltje's horror, I watched an umpire give my opponent no less than 5 serves in one point, and four of us were thoroughly educated by Meredith at a Thai restaurant on the Saturday night. I was told that there would be lots of new experiences out here, they were not wrong about that.

To finish the tennis season Toni took charge of a van and drove (the phrase “and then there were five” comes to mind) us down to Chapel Hill for a mock dual tournament. We successfully made it there without me starving to death, Toni kicking me out of the van for complaining about starving to death, or me eating Toni to solve the starvation problem. This was mentally the first win of the weekend. Sydney and I managed to take control of the music much to everyone’s disappointment, specifically Katie’s on one more controversial song, and I experienced my first more rural gas station in Virginia! I know I am biased, but the team spirit that our mini tribe had this weekend was inspirational. Despite being the smallest team by a distance, we were definitely the loudest and most supportive group at the venue. As a freshman who has not experienced spring season yet, I could not have been more pumped to skip straight to January right there and then! After battling through indoors, outdoors, disappointing losses and excellent wins, getting a good look at the local wildlife, (who knew the Duke indoor tennis centre doubled as an aviary) and taking down Anik's Aggie rivals in style (only ruined by an unintentional attack on Anik's hand with my racket mid match) we hit the road home, Sydney and Anik walking away with a glorious 100% winning record together....may that continue for the entire semester girls!

Thanksgiving was a glorious rest for the team, with even Nina making it all the way back to Arizona, Jeltje experiencing Washington DC with Sydney and Marlen making us all extremely jealous of the sunny picture in Florida. Somehow I found myself on a plane back to an arctic England to play a tennis tournament, I returned somewhat less refreshed than the others, but no less excited to be back with the team! (the team did not help me get over the fact that I missed this wonderful holiday by continuously and thoroughly describing every single piece of food they consumed over the weekend!)

Meredith has outdone herself on two occasions, throwing fabulous Halloween and Christmas parties for the Men's and Women;s tennis teams. Halloween was an event where the Men's and Women's tennis teams joined up class by class and competed for a controversial “morning off running” prize for the best fancy dress costume. The freshmen went as cowboys and Indians, Sydney transforming into a domestic goddess to hand make our costumes, and ironically the only Texan guy in the freshman class looking the least like a cowboy. The Sophomore's separated and Nina quite literally had us all speechless as she donned a wig to become Michael Jackson, with Anik and Marlen as her zombies. While the guys put huge amounts of effort into becoming an Army platoon. Seniors Lauren and Sebas made an insanely good Barbie and Ken lookalike, there have been rumours that they are looking for gigs so do not hesitate to ask them! Finally, the 2010 winners were the Juniors who went as an '80s basketball team, with full Tribe regalia on the front of their shirts, and a functional boom box rested on Tori's shoulder! The Christmas extravaganza was equally fun, with a white elephant gift exchange, where I must controversially admit to unintentional cheating, and plenty of food and Christmas cheer. As usual Meredith decided to throw the freshmen in at the deep end with some team sharing, but nothing could detract from a wonderful evening and end to the semester.

Now all we can do is bring our A game back to Williamsburg for the spring season, and look forward to kicking some ass. GO TRIBE.


Anik Cepeda

January 1

Women’s Tribe Tennis New Year’s Blog

There’s nothing quite like starting afresh...we all know the feeling. It’s like taking that first bite of a homemade apple pie or finally rinsing off in a steamy shower after a rigorous workout. Better yet, it’s like knowing that with the change of one little number comes a blank slate of possibilities. January first is a magical day. Tasks we labeled impossible a week earlier are now totally manageable. Be more organized? Sure! I’ve got a new stack of file folders ready for labeling. Run diligently every morning at 7? Piece of cake! Keep better correspondence with family? I’m thinking up a letter as we speak. The power of the 1/1 is the motivator. It’s the etch-a-sketch shake to our lives. And let’s be real here, everyone loves an etch-a-sketch.

Beginning on 1/1/11 (it’s a wicked cool date, I know) our lives will require no “Undo’s” or “Edits”. Beginning on 1/1/11 we get to make excitingly long lists of how we’ll live our lives better from now until…well honestly from now until next week. I propose there are different kinds of New Years Resolutions. There are the real ones: In 2011 I will do my best to sleep 8 hours each night. This one will be tough but with a strict bedtime schedule I think I’ll be able to manage it… And then there are all the other new years resolutions: In 2011 I will stop biting my fingernails. Well sheesh, how could I ever expect that to happen with school coming up in two weeks?! Besides, I already trimmed one down writing this blog. Or how about…In 2011 I will cut back on sweets. Can I discount the chocolate peanut butter balls consumed minutes prior to sitting behind my computer screen? This year I’m going to do things a little bit differently. A fresh start. A new way of life. I’d like to save myself the guilt of breaking most of my New Years Resolutions SO I will only list areas of growth that I KNOW will get done. This, obviously, is Tribe Tennis.

Only a week and half away from our pre-season extravaganza I can safely assure all readers that we are more than ready to start. I mean, if we could skip the running and the weights and the early morning sit-ups I wouldn’t be too upset. For my New Year’s Resolution I think it’s safe to say that Spring 2011 will be the ROWDIEST, and LOUDIEST season yet. And that, my non-existent readers (other than my mother of course) is what I call a very doable New Years Resolution.

A last note before you close out of the page and resume your ever so captivating lists for the New Year. My teammate, Hope Johnson (the tall Brit who’s ALWAYS singing) will be joining me in the blog this spring. We’ll be switching off every other week, which means you get to hear a fresh voice, a new perspective, and undoubtedly read a good bit of stellar writing. As always, GO TRIBE!!!


Anik Cepeda

November 22

Mini Tribe at UNC and the ITA Hall of Fame

As mini tribe piled into the van after our last match at UNC I couldn’t help but smile. We were returning home having left absolutely every last drop of energy on the courts. Hope was, to put it mildly, ready to swallow Sydney whole out of hunger. Stepping up for the Tribe, Hope played at the number one singles spot all weekend. During the UNC tournament we simulate spring duel matches by playing doubles against one team and singles against a different team. We left Williamsburg with only 5, leaving the others behind to recover and heal. One of the high points was certainly the tremendous effort we posed against Texas A&M, which is the university from my hometown (College Station). Playing outside for the first time in a month and with only 5 players, Toni scurried between matches coaxing us to stay flexible and consistent. Katie ignited the first spark of light when she rallied to take the first set after falling behind 1-4 in the opening 20 minutes. Meanwhile, Hope put on quite a show by out-striking the top ranked Aggie to take the second set and push the match to a decisive third. Sandwiched between Katie and Hope, I was entertained throughout my entire match. Best seat in the house really. Whether it was Hope belting “GO TRIIIIIIIIIBE!” or Katie succumbing to giggling hysterics in the middle of a game, this night battle showcased our mini Tribe’s spirit.

Covering all the matches in a comprehensible two paragraphs is quite the challenge. I’m inclined to write about Hope’s first victory over a ranked opponent (she took out Princeton’s top player), Tori’s singles win over Minnesota, as well as Sydney and my unblemished doubles record. We have yet to lose a match together…100% winning percentage…flawless tally mark…never left the court defeated…perfect, to say the least. (We are an impressive 1-0 for the season. High fiiiiiiive!) The weekend was about stepping up to the plate regardless of who was or was not traveling and sending a strong positive message about Tribe tennis. I’ve got people bumps thinking about next spring…vamooooooos!

Besides watching Harry Potter and counting down the hours until Thanksgiving break, Tribe tennis was lucky enough to meet this year’s ITA Hall of Fame inductees and attend the banquet ceremony (delicious appetizers included). Living legends in college tennis roamed about William & Mary last weekend enjoying this stunningly gorgeous weather. A handful of the Tribe gave a campus tour during which we encouraged everyone to participate in at least one part of the triathlon (I suggested midnight streaking of the sunken gardens for the brave of heart). We are certainly no Hogwarts with moving staircases, dining halls with food that knock your socks off, or exciting quidditch matches BUT, William & Mary has its fair share of magic. Whether it’s the mysterious thrill of the echo wall, the forests of fire colored leaves, or first place soccer and football victories in the CAA, we are pretty lucky to be here at William & Mary. Enjoy stuffing your faces with pumpkin pie and the year’s supply of turkey soup and sandwiches that always follows this warm holiday. Bring on the spring season (and if we could skip finals that would be nice as well…)! I love the Tribe, love the Tribe, LOVE the Tribe.

Quotes of the week:
“It’s like apple pie” – Toni
“Ooooh, I LOVE apples!” – Hope
“No. There’s no apples in it.” – Toni

“Life’s too short! Take a left turn!” – Toni

“I’ll eat you before you chuck me out of the van” – Hope

“I think I just made a decision for my life…” – Marlen
“What’s that?” – Anik
“I want to live in a place that’s warm like this all the time” - Marlen


Anik Cepeda

November 11

Candy, Cookies, and a lot of Tribe Love

In a repeat from last year’s Run and Roll event, the women’s and men’s tennis teams joined wheelchair players at McCormack Nagelson Tennis Center two Fridays ago for a friendly hit. Players from all over spent the weekend in Williamsburg for the Mid-Atlantic USTA Virginia Wheelchair Tennis Open. After a couple rounds, my doubles partner was kind enough to let me take his chair for test drive. Wow. By the time I began wheeling over to a shot it had not only hit the back curtain, but managed to stop rolling as well. Tip #1: Give yourself momentum before hitting each shot…the wheelchair should never be at a stand still. Ever. (Substitute “the wheelchair” for “your feet” and you’ve got the phrase Coach Meredith says each practice.) Tip #2: Body serves work well. Tip #3: Extra tennis balls can be stored between the spokes of your tires. Tip #4: The high quality players we had the privilege of hitting with on Friday night make wheelchair tennis look relatively easy. Don’t be fooled!!! This event was the perfect kick-off to a packed Halloween weekend.

Slowest walkers of the event…give it up for women’s tennis!

About 12 hours later Women’s Tennis participated in the NEDA (National Eating Disorder Association) 5k. Ok, so apparently you could run the 5k, but we decided walking was obviously the more helpful option. What if other walkers needed assistance in following the path? Those forest trails are tricky sometimes… Thus we made sure to come in absolute last, followed only by the W&M baseball players who were posted along the route to point participants in the right direction. Sun kissing our faces, arms linked, matching in our green sweatshirts, tribe tennis walked slowly to the finish line. Tribe athletics made up the largest group of the event. Grabbing bananas from the “FREE FOOD” section (for when the cafeteria supply is depleted), we focused on our next team event…Coach Meredith’s Halloween party for both the men and women’s teams. Bring it onnnnnnnnnn!

Hope and Jeltje at the NEDA walk

This year we held a competition amongst the four classes. The freshman put up an impressive display of Cowboys and Indians. Marlen, Nina, and I brought a little bit of Thriller to the party as Michael and his two zombies. (Nina, you looked stunning in that perm…) The juniors arrived as a co-ed 70s old school basketball team…with “TRIBE” spelled across the fronts of their jerseys. If that wasn’t enough, Tori held a boom-box the size of a puppy Great Dane while they all jammed to an appropriate 70s tune. How can you top that? Lauren and Sebas actually came quite close…the two seniors showed up as Barbie and Ken. Every detail was considered, all the way down to Lauren’s pink watch and hair ribbons. Honestly though, I think Meredith’s son Cash swept away the competition in his ninja outfit. It’s one thing to dress up, but to take the prize as best costume you have to act the part as well. And this, my readers, is why Cash wins. (Not sure how much Ken appreciated the ninja attacks, but the rest of us were greatly entertained.) On behalf of both teams, a big thank you goes out to Coach Meredith and her husband Matt for hosting the party. Thanks for letting us relive our childhood. GO TRIBEEEEEEE!

Katie, Danny, Jacob, Ilja, Tori

Quotes of the Week(s):
“Tell me when to stop.” – Meredith
“When you find Italian!” – Hope
“No…for the radio…” – Katie
“Oh.” - Hope

“OH! Soooo Bi- (whispering) I thought that was in!!” – Anik
“Hide” – Marlen

“I just have to practice looking at you without laughing” – Marlen (to Nina…in her Michael Jackson outfit)

“That picture really tranquilizes me…can you say that?” – Marlen

“Why aren’t you eating? Are you okay?” – Ben Hoogland (to Hope)

*If anyone would like to discuss possible costume ideas for next year or just talk tennis you can always email me at:


Anik Cepeda

October 28


On Thursday afternoon Katie, Hope, Jeltje and I pile our bags into the van. As usual, we’ve all brought book bags filled to the brim with schoolwork to alleviate any and all guilt of not working during this ODU regional tournament. We’ve got the entire van for four players so naturally Jeltje and Hope squeeze in the first row leaving quite a selection of empty rows for my picking. There really isn’t anything quite like an empty van seat, amble leg space, and a fluffy pillow to lull you to sleep.

We managed to catch the end of Tori and Sydney’s qualifying doubles match before loading up once again in search of food. Hope, bless her soul, couldn’t quite figure out how to eat the gelato properly and left the restaurant with a chocolate nose. I left the restaurant in full sprint.

Day one of the tournament:
Both doubles teams won their first rounds in convincing fashion. No sweat. In singles, Hope, Jeltje, and I took Brad Gilbert’s book, Winning Ugly to heart and advanced to the round of 32. Jeltje, unsatisfied with the relatively straightforward matches of the day, put on an entertaining comeback down a set and 4 match points. Admittedly, I didn’t breathe while she tossed the ball for her second serve on the first match point. I also forgot to breathe while she passed Marshall with her golden one-handed backhand on the second match point. It’s all a blur now, but I do recall a successful between the legs shot, and a rather amusing result of ball abuse…(Hypothetically speaking, say there was this opponent who couldn’t convert on 4 match points…let’s call her Player A. If Player A was to smack a ball over the curtain and it unintentionally hit a random coach squarely in the forehead at a clipping pace, would that be considered ball abuse?) Delirious from watching Jeltje’s match, we were more than prepared for the classic toothpick game at dinner.

The toothpick game requires intelligence, skill, and focus (guessing the number of toothpicks we are collectively holding requires more than luck…) so it should come as no surprise that 2013 dominates as much as we do. Hope lost but showed great sportsmanship…I wonder what the children asked their parents after they watched a rather tall girl gallop through the restaurant yelling, “The British are coming! Long live the Queen!” Tribe dinners never fail to amuse…and no, young man, that is not acceptable behavior.

In an effort to keep this blog short and thus the perfect “in between breakfast and lunch” coffee read, I’ll wrap up the rest of the tournament in the next few lines. Although both doubles teams fell in the quarterfinals on Sunday afternoon, the Tribe returned to Williamsburg more experienced and with a new focus. Marlen, Nina, Sydney, Tori, and Lauren were so sweet to stick around for our matches on Friday and Saturday and the tournament would have been rather dull without them. If you’re going to study the properties of 30 different rocks, this is the team to do that with. Also, a big thanks to the Tribe Aces that made it out to ODU. You guys rock!!! As always, GO TRIBE!

Quotes of the Week:
“I wish I could concentrate for more than two points at a time” – Hope

“My thumbs are in the witness protection program” – Katie

“You just hit up the middle and run in, that’s doubles” – Jeltje

“Oh Toni’s driving is this sensible?” – Hope
“I’ve been driving van loooooong time” – Toni

“I was perfect. I was a perfect child” –Nina

*If you want to discuss the properties of various sedimentary rocks or just talk plain tennis you can email me at: ☺


Anik Cepeda

October 10

Tribe Invite, UVA, The Aces, School, Rain, School, Rain, Rain, aaaaand FALL BREAK!

I’m about as diligent with blog writing this semester as I am with vacuuming my rug. Since my last post, Tribe tennis has been considerably busy. Let’s catch up to Fall Break (capitalization of both Fall and Break is necessary…I cannot begin to describe this holiday’s extreme significance in our lives).

Tribe Invite & UVA
As always (I can say that now since I’m a sophomore) we kicked off the fall season with our own Tribe Invitational. Tribe Aces manning the tournament desks coupled with the enthusiasm of our highly amusing freshman made this event a great success. Highlights included kicking a bit of Ivy League butt, and having the eye-catching support of Tribe Swimming, dressed up nicely in Speedos and…yeah Speedos. A few restful days of falling behind in school work and we were packing our bags for UVA. Rather than recap the absolutely stellar tennis played at UVA, I’m going to brush over some of the more memorable “off-court” moments. Firstly, meeting Papá Loomans (Jeltje’s father) was a blast. He joined us for dinner at a Thai restaurant during which the staff celebrated his birthday with cake and music. Mr. Loomans was surprised, but nonetheless delighted to have cake on a date so far from his actual birthday. Later that same night, I also recall Marlen coaxing a couple free chocolates from a woman cleaning the closed Lindt store. Why she doesn’t try to coax her opponents into giving her a few games is beyond me. And that concludes our first team tournaments of the year…on to bigger and better things, namely the Tribe Aces doubles mixer!

The Tribe Aces mixer isn’t better than tournaments because of the double chocolate brownies or pasta salads or irresistible lemon squares that surely are unhealthy after you revisit the dessert table for the 7th time…it’s better because the event is literally the first family moment we have since leaving home. Exchanging volley wars, being tactically outwitted on the court, and eating a casual and complete sit-down dinner with the best supporters in college tennis describes the Tribe Aces event in a nutshell. Aces, we love you, we love your cheering, we love your superior volleys, and we love your lemon squares.

Rain and schoolwork followed those first couple tennis-packed weeks. For the thousandth time…how do I always manage to talk myself out of purchasing an umbrella?! Ah, but the sun is out now and surely those five straight days of pouring rain weren’t SO bad… Bored of traumatizing the students and squirrels at William & Mary, the sun showed up just in time for Marlen’s sister, Mariam to enjoy a bit of sun-bathing in the sunken gardens. Which leaves us in the midst of Fall Break…basking like red-eared sliders, blissfully promising ourselves not to spare one glimpse towards our back packs until Tuesday evening rolls around. I think I’ll lie on my rug now, seeing as it’s been freshly vacuumed and is more or less sanitary enough for a catnap. Until next week (or month!) … GO TRIBE!

Quotes of the MONTH:

“Ah, there’s no pepper for hotness, now I understand” – Marlen

“I’m too lazy to go…I’ll get food essentially” – Jeltje

“I love Indian food, I love Thai food, UGH… I love Chinese food, I love food” – Hope

“Can we all win in two sets tomorrow please?” – Hope
“Oh yeah!” – Sydney
“mmmm” – Jeltje
“Do you regularly go to three sets Jeltje?” – Sydney
“No, I normally just lose in two” – Jeltje

“Hope, did you have to take the T.O.E.F.L.?” –Katie (T.O.E.F.L. = Test of English as a Foreign Language)


Anik Cepeda

September 9

Today is a good blogging day. I can feel it. From the moment my mediocre, freshly peeled cafeteria orange hit the dirt floor around 6:40 this morning I knew it would be one of those days when life is a couple steps ahead of you, staring back to chuckle at your futile attempts to catch up. But despite the orange incident, and my painfully embarrassing wave to some student who “clearly” meant for their salutation to reach the person behind me, I feel at peace. I attribute this feeling to the welcoming cohesion of our 2010-11 Women’s Tribe Tennis team. Since all of my readers will not have the absolute pleasure of meeting the new additions to Tribe Tennis this Friday, September 10 during our Fall Invitational, I’ve deducted that a brief online summary of each of the fabulous four freshman should do the trick.

I’ll begin with our English challenged freshman from Welwyn Garden City, United Kingdom. Of everyone on the team I find it most difficult to understand Miss Hope Johnson in all her British mumbling glory. (By the way, that really was too bad about Green in the World Cup…you know, the match where the United States tied with England 1-1?) Although our super up-to-date and not at all pre-historic athletics website lists Hope as 0’0”, I can assure you this is not the case. An energetic and math-loving individual (bless her soul), Hope shares my love for singing, although her execution of that pastime is several levels above mine. I know you all will find her to be absolutely lushhh.

Move your gaze down approximately a foot and you’ve spotted Marivick Mamiit from Pasadena, California. Don’t be fooled by her travel-size appearance…this girl packs a punch. Besides reducing my returning skills to that of a beginning pre-schooler, Marivick’s lefty bullet gives the sense of an optical illusion. Instead of locating a ball mark, I see streaks as if I had just spent the last 10 minutes staring dumbly into the sun. If you can help me think of nicknames for Marivick please don’t hesitate to shoot me an email. Lately I’ve been trying to push for M&M but it has yet to gain popularity… “Lefty”, “mighty mouse”, and “M-Squared” have all hit the trash bin.

My sick (as in ill) buddy this week, Sydney Smith from Washington, D.C. has molded seamlessly onto the team. I rank Sydney’s dorm room as the coziest, Sydney’s closet as the fullest, Sydney’s imitation of Jeltje’s impossible dance move as the most accurate, and Sydney’s tennis bag as the most ginormous. (Don’t be fooled by the tennis bag floating around bags CANNOT walk and surely don’t know their way around the forest paths better than the average student.) Sydney was the first casualty during our campus team run and yet managed to pull off the “dirt on the face-look” quite nicely. Now that’s what I call Tribe Pride.

Last but certainly not least, Jeltje Loomans from Houton, The Netherlands caps the final piece to our freshman parade. Perhaps more impressive than her one-handed backhand are Jeltje’s soccer skills. Surprisingly, the friction from the World Cup (where, in case you missed it, Spain beat The Netherlands 1-0), has yet to unsettle this Dutchie. Actually, Jeltje looks anything but Dutch. Her long blonde hair, blue eyes, and decent height…oh wait. Other than drinking hot chocolate for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, Jeltje also likes to sing. To my delight, her singing skills fair only slightly better than mine. When you meet Jeltje this weekend don’t hesitate to ask for a demonstration of the dance move I mentioned above. You will be amazed.

It’s good to be back in the Burg. Matches start at 9:00 a.m. GOOOO TRIBE!

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