Tennis club makes ground in first semester


CSUB SRC Tennis Club members practicing at the SRC’s courts on May 10. JJ Reed/The Runner

By Vincent Perez, Features Editor

Evan Lostetter was a soccer forward for Liberty High School for four years. Yet, you would not find him on the pitch playing with the men’s soccer team on campus.

You’re more likely to see the CSU Bakersfield junior on the clay lobbing and serving tennis balls near the old dorms at CSUB.

Lostetter, a kinesiology major, is president of the SRC Tennis Club. As president, he has seen his club grow from himself and four safety officers to a successful 20-25 players at most practices.

Evan Lostetter, CSUB SRC Tennis Club president, gets ready to serve at the SRC tennis courts on May 10.
JJ Reed/The Runner

The total members have reached to 31 members within its first semester, an impressive spike of members.

The SRC Tennis Club became an officially chartered club on the first day of this spring semester, according to Lostetter, who began playing tennis only a year and half ago.

“Ed Webb in the student union was super helpful,” said Lostetter. “The process is long and tedious, but he definitely helped make it do-able for the students.”

“I had an idea of starting a tennis club,” said Lostetter. “Madi Parks, treasurer of the club also helped.”

Last semester, the tennis club competed in three on-campus competitions, at San Diego (California Sectionals) and in Fresno (West Coast Classic).

Lostetter said the most of the members of the tennis club are former high school players looking to play again. Yet, forming official tennis teams is not in his vision.

He said he wants to create a larger tennis community on campus.

“To where people feel completely safe to be around. They’re super stressed with finals coming up,” said Lostetter.

“Let’s all come out to the tennis court and have a good time.”

He said he wants players from all ranges of experience to join and play with the members. He added the members are willing to teach tennis skills.

Madi Parks, a senior kinesiology major, began playing tennis competitively two years ago and was asked by Lostetter through a mutual friend, Caitlin

Goetjen, to join because she was interested in tennis and had more than a full-time semester of units.

The tennis club on campus was formed for one reason: to have fun.

“I’m not a great player but I have fun doing it,” said Parks.

“As long as we get people out there playing, that’s all that matters to Evan and I.”

Personal growth was something that Parks didn’t expect but she got from the tennis club.

“I’ve developed personally,” said Parks. “Through [the SRC Tennis Club] I’ve met people and become more involved in CSUB.”

Parks said she did not enjoy her time on campus until her senior year after her involvement in the SRC Tennis Club.

“It’s important because we don’t have a collegiate tennis [program] anymore,” said Parks.

“They should have an option to play at a club level.”

Footwork is essential to tennis and, so for those with soccer backgrounds, the transition is near seamless.

“We have a lot of soccer players out there,” said Lostetter. “It’s a sport that seems different than [soccer] but has a lot of the same fundamentals.”

Ariel Rodgers, a kinesiology major, is a safety officer in the club, met Lostetter in a shared class this semester.

“I’ve always been involved in sports,” said Rodgers. She played soccer, softball and golf in high school.

Camaraderie is an important community aspect. “Tennis players know other tennis players,” said Lostetter. “That’s how we spread [word about it]– through word of mouth.”

Lostetter may have started his athletic career at the age of four in soccer, but his true passion now is promoting tennis in Bakersfield.

He said that The Tennis Club received support from the United States Tennis Association (USTA) and the Kern County Tennis Association by sending collegiate tennis coaches to practices.

USTA has sent officials to the practices, said Lostetter. “The support we’re getting from the tennis community is unbelievable and that has contributed to our growth.”

For more information on the SRC Tennis Club, visit their Instagram or Twitter @csub_tenniscslub.