July 2, 2014
MADISON, Wis. -- After an eye-opening freshman season at Wisconsin, Sydney Rider is doing everything she can to be more comfortable in her sophomore year. This summer, that means playing in a number of tournaments and working on her game.
“Playing these tournaments really helps me get ready for the fall,” Rider said. “They help me keep improving and I can stay in shape both physically and mentally. Plus, I’m able to focus on things that need work.”
Before returning to Madison for the fall semester, Rider will play seven to eight events, competing in U.S. Open qualifiers and the ITA summer circuit. Judging by her recent results, she’s finding success.
Last weekend, Rider ripped off five consecutive wins to advance to the finals of the USTA tournament at the University of Washington Mary in Fredericksburg, Virginia.
“It was a fun tournament,” Rider explained. “My freshman season had a lot of downs, so it’s fun to see the results start coming and build my confidence up.
“I struggled with my serve in the spring, so I’m dedicating a lot of extra time to that this summer. I’m also working on moving forward and taking advantage of short balls. With my game, I need to be able to capitalize on those opportunities.”
Rider’s next opportunity to work on her game will come at the Virginia Tech ITA tournament beginning on July 6.
Just because she is playing mostly solo tournaments this summer, doesn’t mean Rider hasn’t been around her fellow Badgers. In fact, Rider faced teammate Lauren Chypyha in the second round of the $10,000 ITF tournament in Bethany Beach, Delaware.
Chypyha would win the intra-squad tussle, one of her three wins in the event, qualifying her for the main draw. In the main draw, Chyphya lost a tough-three set match to NCAA singles tournament qualifier Stephanie Nauta of Virginia.