Ryan Chartrand

In her freshman year at Cal Poly, Brittany Blalock has already reached first on the women’s tennis team’s standings.

Starting out the season second in both singles and doubles, she received the bump up to the No. 1 spot after senior Carol Erickson suffered a forearm injury that ended her season.

Blalock has been playing tennis competitively for 10 years. She was raised competing in several team sports, but eventually chose to focus on tennis.

“My mom played in college and so did my dad, so they taught my whole family,” Blalock said.

Coming out of high school, Blalock was ranked sixth among prep players in Southern California. She had an outstanding fall season at Cal Poly in 2006 in which she won the Fullerton Intercollegiate.

But there are still more lofty goals on the horizon, Cal Poly head coach Hugh Bream said.

“I would like to see her improve her score each year and end up as one of the best players in the nation,” Bream said.

Blalock is 20-13 this season, and on top of tennis, she manages to keep up with her academics as a business major. Instead of taking away from her schoolwork, Blalock said it actually makes her focus harder.

“Since I’ve done this for so long, I’ve developed a good sense of time management,” Blalock said. “I think it’s a great thing to play.”

On a typical day, Blalock wakes early for morning class and then heads to practice from noon until 3 p.m. This is followed by sprinting and lifts, a break until 4:30 p.m., and study hall until she heads to class again from 5 to 7 p.m.

“The tennis life is never boring,” Bream said. “There’s always an exciting goal and everything is constantly changing. It’s a very stimulating lifestyle.”

Blalock plans on pursuing a sports-related career, possibly in sports management. She doesn’t know if tennis will continue being a large part of her life after college.

“It’s what I’m most passionate about and enjoy playing every day, but I can’t tell what the future holds,” she said.

Bream can’t wait to see what the future holds.

“I’m excited about coaching her these next three years and seeing how far she can take this,” he said.

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