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My Year in Review

By Keiran President
On April 30, 2018

Photo by: Bruna Pacheco

What a year it was for me: from transferring to Ottawa University to overcoming being ineligible in the fall, the never-ending winter and a history-making tennis season for OU.

I transferred to Ottawa from Cameron University, a Division II NCAA school in Lawton, Oklahoma. When it comes to differences between Lawton and Ottawa, it is easy to say that Lawton was a bigger town, which came with more to do than dollar margaritas at El Mezcal and O-Town to grab a drink.

Despite the change in state, the towns still shared the same farming culture. But what I have noticed is that around Ottawa, I see more livestock, whereas Lawton was more of produce farming.

I have adapted to the culture, but I have not adapted to the neverending cold weather conditions. In the beginning, I was not too excited about the fact that I was moving to a school further north. In my head that meant colder weather conditions, which delayed my commitment as I was waiting for scholarship offers from schools farther south.

Since that didn’t work out, I am sitting in a class in the Fall of 2017 where classroom sizes were much smaller compared to my last school. This was good in my opinion, as students would be able to get more attention from professors if need be.

Two weeks into classes and practice I found out that I would not be eligible to play in the fall semester but would be eligible if I complete 19 credit hours during the semester. I sat out the fall semester, survived the cold weather conditions, passed all 19 credit hours, attained a 3.6 GPA and became eligible for the spring season.

During that fall season I was really disappointed, with thoughts such as, “if I stayed at my old school, I would have been eligible. This was a bad decision.” There were other negative thoughts flooding my head, however I chose to stay positive and work extra hard for the upcoming spring season.

During the winter break I got the chance to go enjoy the warm tropical Caribbean weather back home in St. Lucia, and what a blessing that was. I did not want to return to the bipolar Kansas weather conditions.

Sadly, I did, and to my surprise I was greeted on the airport by about half a foot of snow. “Yay.” Coming from the warm temperatures to below freezing temperatures is the best thing that could have happened upon my return (sarcasm level 100 percent).

Despite that, I was on a mission to make this spring tennis season mine! My last spring tennis season, personally, was horrible and I had all the intentions of making this one the total opposite.

As a team, we still made it to the NCAA DII National Championship, but, personally I didn’t contribute to my full potential.

Last spring, I finished with a singles record of 5-14 and doubles record of 7-7. I made the flip this year and accomplished a little more along the way. As of right now, heading into KCAC Tournament semifinals, I have a singles record of 15-5 and a doubles record of 17-3. Along the route of achieving this, I was awarded KCAC Player of the Week, attained a central region ranking of 19 in singles and 6 in doubles.

Photo from: Ottawabraves.com

I am proud of my accomplishments so far, both on the court and in the classroom. Despite my worries and frustration in the fall, I was still able to find the motivation to get through and do my utmost best. I have no regrets in the decision I have made, and I am making the best of it.

Every disappointment is a blessing, and it’s up to us to find the blessing within it.

 

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