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1983-84 Women's Tennis

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Concordia's women's tennis team, coached by Bernice Pavek, compiled an MIAC 6-0 record, an overall tally of 15-4 and a fourth place finish at the conference tournament.  Individually, Tammy Thielman '84, number-two singles from Jamestown, N.D., placed sixth in conference play.  She received recognition as a 1984 ITCA (Intercollegiate Tennis Coaches Association) Scholar-Athlete of the Year based on her varsity tennis accomplishments and outstanding scholastic achievement. A four-year varsity regular and captain of the team her third and fourth years, she graduated summa cum laude with a major in biology. Kelly Oevermann '85, from Cass Lake, Minn.; Jill Waalen 84 Hudson, Wis.; and Karen Brunsdale '85, Mahnomen, Minn., Concordia's number three-through-five singles respectively, were all eliminated in the semi-final round of conference play. Kathlyn Kinnear '84, number-six singles player from Greenwood, Ind., won the consolation round after being upset as a seeded player.

All-American Julie Gilbertson was not only Concordia's first women's tennis player to compete in the NCAA Division III national tournament, she went on to place fourth, losing only after taking the eventual tournament winner to three full sets. Undefeated during the regular season and title winner at the MIAC conference tournament, Gilbertson, who will be a sophomore this fall, has set her sights on winning the national tournament next year, which would automatically qualify her for the Division I tournament.

A competitor since seventh grade, she was afraid tennis would interfere with her schoolwork at Concordia so she made it a point to budget her time very carefully. When lab schedules meant missing practices, she used her study breaks to play tennis. Although earning all-American status was a thrill, Gilbertson doesn't feel it proves superiority in a sport. "What the honor says is that the person had a really good year," she says. "To win the honor four years could say that 'here's an athlete with some good talent.'