COED SPORT ENGAGES STUDENT ATHLETES
Spring is in the air, and on the outskirts of Auraria Campus there is the Regency Athletic Center, where the CU Denver Club Sport Tennis team works on their serves and hits in the sunny weather.
Senior Lena Nowaki, one of the captains for the Club Sports Tennis team has been a part of the organization for three years. She has seen it flourish since its inception five years ago. “We have a great turnout this year, which has allowed us to be a great team together,” Nowaki said.
While the majority of the student body commutes back and forth between home and class, tennis has given CU Denver students a reason to stay and engage on campus. “Everyone is there because they want to be a part of a team, something bigger than themselves,” Nowaki said, ruling that CU Denver students want something more than just academics.
The Club Sports Tennis team has furthermore allowed students to connect with one another over their passion for tennis. There’s an understanding that a love of the sport is not the only necessary factor for a successful team. They foster an environment that encourages team bonding and building, through activities such as team dinners and get-togethers. “It has provided students within our school strong bonds and friendships in a place such as commuter school, where it can very difficult,” Nowaki said.
It’s also important to note that this club sports team aims to do more than cruise by and have fun; they also want to win. “I want to try and have a good time, while winning as much as possible,” Omer Sarwana, a senior tennis player, said. “Winning is great for the mind and soul. I just want to improve my tennis for the future and connect with people while doing it.”
Club Sports Coordinator Brett Lagerblade has seen the program flourish and sees the opportunity this team offers on campus. “Participation in the campus community impacts the overall satisfaction and contentment of a student,” Lagerblade said. “Not only do the student-athletes feel a greater enthusiasm with our university, I feel that our university community as a whole has developed a greater sense of spirit, pride, connection, and loyalty through sport clubs like tennis.”
CU Denver tennis players strive for improvement in their game throughout the season. “Feeling your game improve, hitting shots and serves with more power and regularity, all of it is incredibly rewarding,” Sarwana said. “And when coupled with the ever-necessary mental focus is a microcosm for slow but regular self improvements.”
They got their head in the game. More information on how to join club sports is available at cudenver.edu/clubsports.