Athlete of the Week Archive

April 3, 2007


Qwest Wyoming Home

Corina Lazar

How did you get from Romania to the University of Wyoming?
"I was looking for schools to come to in the States and I had talked to an assistant coach at a university in Texas and that assistant was Romanian. The thing was that she had gone to school here for a couple of years and she knew that Wyoming was looking for a new player and asked me if she could send my information here and that's what she did and here I am."

How big was the sport of tennis for you growing up?
"Actually, tennis is not that big in Romania. Tennis is associated with having a lot of money and being of an upper class standing and Romania is not a very wealthy country, so it wasn't that big in Romania at least."

Who is the most famous Romanian tennis player?
"There are a couple, but most recently was probably Andrei Pavel. He was in the top ten a couple of years ago."

Growing up, who did you follow, or look up to as a professional player?
"I never had like a role model. I always liked to watch tennis on TV, especially men's competitions. I don't really like to watch women's tennis because it can sometimes be a little bit boring compared to men's tennis; I don't know, I just enjoy watching men's more than women's."

How has your game progressed since you've gotten here?
"Oh my game has changed a lot. Back home I mostly played on red clay, which is so much slower than the hard courts we play on here and I think I play better on hard courts and I think that it has allowed me to get better as a player. I think my game has changed a lot because I used to be really impatient and I would try to finish off the points really fast. I grew up a little bit and now I am a more patient player."

How would you describe your style of play?
"I am a baseliner. I kind of come to the net sometimes, but not really. It's not what I do all the time. I am pretty much the type of player who likes to lead the point and then likes to finish it."

Do you prefer doubles or singles?
"I definitely have a preference. I mean doubles is fun, but we didn't really play doubles back home and I hadn't played it that much before I came here, so I wasn't really used to depending on someone else when playing tennis. I much more of a singles player; I have to admit it."

How has it been playing at 7,220 feet?
"My home town is zero, so it was a pretty big difference for me for about a month and a half and then you just have to adjust and get used to it. It's hard when I come back from summer break because of the altitude, but it's not such a big deal anymore."

What do you think of Laramie in the summers?
"Well, I don't stay here for the entire summer. I usually go home for about a month and a half or so, but it's really quiet when I am here. There aren't that many people around. I don't know, it's just so much different because I grew up in a city that has about one million people and there is a huge night life and you don't really have that here. It's so quiet and so nice and safe. That's why my parent were excited about me coming here because it's safe."

What do you like to do when you're not playing tennis or going to school?
"I like to sleep. I don't really watch that much TV on a regular basis, when I get some time off I enjoy laying in bed and watching TV. I don't know, I like to go to movies and sometimes cook, which isn't working out for me that well."

Have you been able to see any other parts of Wyoming since you've been here?
"I went to Jackson for winter break my sophomore year and I thought it was really cool. It's kind of like Laramie, but it's a little bit different too. It's a little more western, somehow. Just because there are no 14,000 university students around, but it's definitely cool though."

Have you given any thought as to what you are going to do when school is done?
"I don't really want to think about it yet, but actually I am going to apply for graduate school and apply for some jobs and see what my best bet is. And if none of those work, then I always have a third option of just going back home."

What is your major?
"I am a journalism major."

What is your favorite place to eat on the road?
"I don't really have a favorite place to eat, as long as they have good food their service is really quick, usually because we're starving by the time we get there, then it doesn't really matter. We eat at places like Olive Garden and On the Border. I don't know, I just like somewhere where you can get a good steak and some mashed potatoes."

What is your favorite type of music?
"I have a Spanish minor and so lately I've been trying to listen to a lot of Spanish music, but before a match, I will try to listen to a lot of R&B and Hip Hop just to try and get pumped up."

What is one thing that you like about the U.S. that you can't do in Romania and then visa versa?
"You guys don't have my mom's cooking. Oh my God I miss that so much. The one thing that you have that we don't is college sports. You can't go to college and play sports at the same time. You can I guess, but you never know how good you're going to do because it's pretty unusual. That's why I'm here, because I wouldn't have had the opportunity to play sports and go to college at the same time."