Anastasia Goncharova, Class of 2018, is no stranger to success. She was ranked fifth in the midwest when she graduated from ETHS and is now entering the courts of Salt Lake City as she transferred to the University of Utah from the University of California, Santa Barbara following her junior year. Although Goncharova has found success in college, adjusting to a higher level was a big transition.
“The biggest difference between playing in college and playing in high school is that the stakes are much higher. The expectations are continuously increasing and the amount of training on-and-off court differs tremendously,” Goncharova said.
Goncharova will continue the hard work and add to the resume she’s built from the first two years of her collegiate career but will do so representing a different school, as she made the move to Salt Lake City to attend the University of Utah.
“I felt like the environment at UCSB was not right for me, and I was starting to not enjoy what I love doing the most, which is playing tennis,” Goncharova explained. “That is when I realized that I needed to make a change, and I definitely made the right decision. I am in such a happy place now and cannot wait to compete as a Ute!”
Tennis, like all other NCAA sports, was put on pause due to Coronavirus. Tennis is considered on the low-risk spectrum regarding COVID-19 due to the players’ ability to play outside and socially distance. Goncharova’s fall preseason was cancelled, but she is hopeful that she and her team will compete in the spring.
“There have definitely been changes to how we train as of now. All the guidelines are followed, and we are thankful that we have been able to train since the end of August. because many tennis programs, especially those in California, have not started yet,” Goncharova said.
Despite the hardships during the pandemic, she has kept her tennis game sharp and is motivated by all the love and support she receives from home.
“I really miss being a Wildkit and that we have a very special community, which supports their athletes a lot, and even though I am in college now, I always feel the support and love coming from home.”