Off the tennis court, Winde Janssens and Carla Manzi Tenorio share a giggle, and each knows exactly what the other is thinking.
On the court, besides the giggling, it’s not much different.
“We play well together, as a team,” Janssens said.
Manzi Tenorio quickly interjected, “We communicated well.”
Finally, to finish off the question, Janssens said of their play the previous weeks, “I felt we kept fighting.”
These court-mates, both sophomores, are not only having fun on the tennis court. They are also winning, and they’re quickly becoming a force to be reckoned with among their opponents.
Colorado sophomore Carla Manzi Tenorio returns a volley against Louisiana State University in this file photo from Jan. 22. Manzi Tenorio and her partner Winde Janssens are this week's CUI Athletes of the Week. (CU Independent File/Kai Casey)
In the previous two matches against the University of New Mexico and the University of Northern Colorado — both of which were CU victories — this duo was undefeated. The pair won both No. 2 doubles matches rather easily, with scores of 8-3 and 8-5, respectively.
They then split up and made quick work of their competition in the singles slots, each winning both of their matches (Janssens 3-6, 6-1, 6-4 against UNM and 6-3, 6-2 against Northern Colorado; Manzi Tenorio 6-1, 3-6, 6-2 against UNM and 6-0, 6-2 against Northern Colorado).
Janssens and Manzi Tenorio are a fairly odd couple. Janssens is from Peer, Belgium, and Manzi Tenorio hails from Cali, Colombia, roughly 5,300 miles from Janssens’ hometown. Each found their way to Boulder, and somewhat by accident, they clicked right away.
“Actually, at the beginning of freshman year I guess we were the last two left out so they put us together and we just did amazing in our first tournament,” Manzi Tenorio said. “And then we kept on playing together and somehow we started to understand each other and know what the other one was going to do.”
Their shy personalities, fun yet hardworking attitudes and explosive skills make them a crucial part of the Colorado women’s tennis program. They continue to grind to get better in the Pac-12 Conference, which is one of the best in the nation.
Are they confident and excited about the season?
Janssens and Manzi Tenorio look at each other. They smile, giggle, nod and utter in unison, “Yeah.”
Contact CU Independent Staff Writer Andy McDonnell at Andrew.email@example.com.
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