Samuel Tadevosian, a freshman on the Fresno State men’s tennis team is looking forward to an exciting first season of collegiate play. At only 17, Tadevosian, who graduated a year early from high school, may seem too young, but when it comes to tennis he has plenty of experience.
Born in Hollywood, California and raised in Glendale, Tadevosian began playing tennis at age 6. His first partner was his grandfather, the man responsible for his involvement with the sport. “I started playing tennis because my Grandpa loved the sport,” Tadevosian said.
At age 7, Tadevosian began taking tennis lessons. He participated in USTA Southern California Tournaments and was ranked #8 in the Boys Under-18 Division. Tadevosian played on his high school tennis team at Hoover High School in Glandale, his freshman year. That year, their boy’s tennis team won the division championship.This was a great memory for Tadevosian because, “It’s so competitive in Southern California and I grew up with those kids [his teammates]”, he said.
Roger Federer is one of Tadevosian’s favorite players because he is, “Amazing, smooth and
calm on the court,” he stated. He also looks towards Sarkis Sarkisian for inspiration because he is a professional tennis player who is also Armenian.
Tadevosian has aspirations of becoming a professional player after college. If not, he looks to have a career in the business field. Currently undeclared, Tadevosian is thinking of majoring in Business Management.
Tadevosian has had a good experience at Fresno State thus far. “I like the people, the environment, and it’s much calmer here than in Los Angeles,” he says.
The Bulldog men’s tennis team is bonding and looking forward to their season, which begins in the spring. The only problem is, they currently do not have a coach. They were left without one at the beginning of the school year.
Fresno has a very strong Armenian community and Tadevosian is impressed by it. “I love it, it is so different than Glendale. Armenians have been here so long, everyone is so successful, it makes unme proud,” he said. Tadevosian also finds Fresno’s Armenian community to be very welcoming and
Tadevosian is currently enrolled in an Armenian Studies course, Armenian Studies 20-Arts of Armenia. “I’m learning so many things about Armenian culture I didn’t know,” he stated. Tadevosian enjoys his professor Barlow Der Mugrdechian, who he says has played a large role in his adjustment to college and life in a new city. For that he is quite grateful.
If you ask almost any collegiate tennis player how many years of private lessons they have taken, they’re likely to say many, but that is not the case for 19-year old Alyssa Sahakian. Sahakian, a sophomore Kinesiology major, is a member of the Fresno State women’s tennis team, but unlike most players she has never taken private lessons or even played on an organized team. “I’m self-taught. I’ve never had a private lesson in my life,” Sahakian proudly stated.
Sahakian, a Fresno native, graduated from Bullard High School in 2003. She has always had a love for the game of tennis. She began playing tennis at age 5 because she enjoyed the sport and loved watching it on television. Her favorite player is fellow Armenian André Agassi, “I love watching him play,” she proudly said. Sahakian is proud to be a member of the Bulldog women’s tennis team, especially because she did not even try out; she was asked to join.
“I was out on the courts playing with one of my friends and the women’s tennis coach had been watching me play for weeks prior to that. So, one day, he walked up to and it’s much calmer here than in Los Angeles,” he says. The Bulldog men’s tennis team is bonding and looking forward to their season, which begins in the spring. The only problem is, they currently do not have a coach.
They were left without one at the beginning of the school year. Fresno has a very strong Armenian community and Tadevosian is impressed by it. “I love it, it is so different than Glendale. Armenians have been here so long, everyone is so successful, it makes me and said that he had been watching me play and asked me if I would like to walk-on the team. And the rest is history,” Sahakian said.
Last season the Fresno State women’s tennis team won the WAC for the third year in a row. Sahakian was excited to be a part of that team and proud of their accomplishment. The Bulldog Women’s Team looks to win their 4th consecutive title this spring and Sahakian cannot wait to get out on the court. “I want to get better, become more skilled, more athletically inclined and just better at the game,” she said.
Sahakian works equally hard in the classroom and plans on becoming a dentist. She chose to attend Fresno State because she likes its strong foundation in sports and that it is close to home.
Sahakian also likes that Fresno State offers Armenian Studies courses. She plans on taking an Armenian language course next semester, where she hopes to better her Armenian speaking skills and learn more about her Armenian heritage. Sahakian loves how Fresno’s Armenian Community is so strong.“It is very rich in culture. Everyone’s together, like one big family,” she says.