Coronavirus, Sports, Women's Sports, Women's Tennis

Beach tennis player looks to make the best of a short season and a long isolation

Usually lively with the sounds of the Long Beach State tennis team trying to defend its Big West Championship title, the Rhodes Tennis Center is now empty and quiet.

It’s been eerily silent since the last game played March 10, a 5-2 win against the University of Memphis, giving the Beach (8-4) their eighth win in 12 games this season.

For junior Sadaf Sadeghvaziri, a dominating singles match win over Tigers freshman Monique Woog in three sets (6-3, 6-7, 6-2) would end up being her last on the court this year.

A native of Tehran, Iran, Sadeghvaziri has been doing her best to remain calm during the pandemic. But being over 7,500-miles away from her family hasn’t made that easy. 

“Because of the United States’ travel ban for Iran, I was not able to go home,” Sadeghvaziri said. “It’s really sad because obviously, in these kinds of situations, the families want all the members to be together.”

Despite the struggles of social distancing and a canceled season, Sadeghvazir said she is doing her best to cope.

“It’s on us to stay in shape and come back next year in the same place we left,” she said. “We won the Big West last year, and we were really excited and motivated to go back there this year and fight for the trophy and defend our place. There is nothing we can do at this point and hopefully, next year will be our year.”

Head coach Jenny Hilt-Costello remains optimistic about the team’s outlook despite the season’s cancellation.

“It is a bummer to lose the season, but it is totally understandable,” Hilt-Costello said via email. “There are far bigger problems involved with the COVID-19 pandemic than spring sports not finishing their season. It’s just one season and we’ll be back on the courts again next year.”

Sadeghvaziri, a third-year international business major, is 18-4 in singles and 6-2 in doubles matches this season.

Trying to find a silver lining in the situation, Sadeghvaziri is looking at the positives that can come from this situation.

“It’s like a call for all the people to wake up and enjoy their lives,” Sadeghvaziri said. “We can lose everything in a blink of an eye.”

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What to know about COVID-19

Common symptoms:

• Cough

• Fever

• Tiredness

• Shortness of breath

Symptoms can begin to present one to 14 days after initial exposure, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

How is it transmitted?

• Close contact with someone, such as shaking hands or hugging.

• Contact with droplets from a sneeze or cough.

• Touching of eyes, mouth or nose with dirty hands.

Are you at risk?

• Have you traveled to an affected area within the past two weeks?

• Have you had close contact with someone who is infected?

If yes to either, and you begin to present symptoms, call your doctor and ask to be tested. 

Prevention:

There is currently no treatment for COVID-19, but the CDC recommends measures to contain the spread of the virus.

• Self-isolate; avoid contact with others including pets; only leave your house for food or medical attention.

• Wear a face mask.

• Wash your hands often and for at least 20 seconds; sanitizer must contain over 60% alcohol to be effective.

• Clean “high-touch” areas every day.  

•  Maintain a six-foot distance from other individuals; abide by “social distancing” recommendations. 

•  Avoid gatherings with more than nine people. 

 Alert health officials if you think you have COVID-19; monitor your symptoms.


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