April 20, 2012
Getting to Know: Kelsey Haviland
What has it been like, working from not playing much as a freshman to being mostly in the top half the past three years?
I learned quickly my freshman year that I had to earn my way to a spot in the lineup. After being benched that first year, I realized I never wanted that feeling of not contributing to my team again. I have worked hard and it has been rewarding to play in the top half of the lineup the past few years. There has been success and there have been struggles, but I'm proud of my accomplishments.
What has been the best moment for you as a Buckeye?
My favorite moment is actually a two-part answer. The coolest moments were coming back from down 3-1 to beat Wisconsin at the Big Ten tournament last year and then doing it again from being down 3-2 against them and winning.
Do you remember your first day here?
I remember my first day at practice we moved inside because of rain. We did our warmup run and then my heart started racing because we were doing a short court drill. My heart was ready to jump out of my throat because I was so nervous to miss a ball. I got used to it though. Being the youngest person out there, I got picked on a lot.
How has it been as the lone member of your class?
Being the only athlete in my class on the team, I had to learn the ropes by myself. I didn't have another player to lean on that was going through the same thing as me that first year. As a result, I became very independent. I would never trade in that experience for anything.
After the season is over, what are you going to do with your newly found free time?
It's going to be a big transition for me to have this big block of free time to myself every day. I will probably enjoy it for a couple days and then start to go crazy and need to fill it with something, whether it's playing tennis or some other activity.
How much are you looking forward to hosting the Big Ten tournament?
I'm really excited to host the Big Ten tournament. It will be nice to say I played my last few collegiate matches on our home courts with family and friends available to watch in our brand new facility. I'm hoping we can do big things and go far in the tournament in front of a home crowd.
Any last words of wisdom for the team?
Don't take a day for granted in anything you do, but especially with this team. Four years is just a flash in your lifetime.
What do you think about the success you've seen as a Buckeye?
Getting a taste of success as a team made me realize we could always do better. It made me realize the talent everyone on this team has and that there's always room for improvement for everyone.
What does the future hold for you?
I'm planning on graduating in December after studying Marketing and International Business. I don't have a job lined up yet, but I will be searching and applying. I'm hoping to move out to the East Coast to be closer to my dad's family in New Jersey.
How have you handled the senior leadership role by yourself this season?
I learned from the seniors before me. I have seen a lot of great players come through this program and I've tried to take qualities from each of those people. I have also tried to always put the team first during each of the last four years. My team has become my second family and family always comes first.
Kelsey has words of wisdom and advice to leave with each of the girls returning next season:
Niki - Keep bringing the high energy to practice and leading the way. There is so much tennis ahead of you and great things to come. Keep running those "laps!"
Kelsey D - You have accomplished so many things as a freshman that not many of us have. Keep working and believing in yourself!
Becker - My best memory of the year was playing doubles with you at LSU. Remember, when you want something, take it! Only good things happen to people named Boris.
Tiffany - You have made such huge improvements in one year, keep going! Ps. I did not mean to hit you in the face at practice this year.
Noelle - Thank you for diagnosing all my injuries with your anatomy book this year. Keep fighting the fight!
Fidan - I can't wait to see you on TV this summer. Make your senior year the best one yet. The show goes on!
Kara - You never gave up and look where you are now. You are the true definition of dedication. Ps. Never take a ride from strangers on a firetruck.
Gabby - Thank you for stopping the blender usage at 7 a.m. at our apartment. Make your last year of tennis fun and memorable!