Freshman Gaby Pollner has already made her mark on the Women’s Tennis team, racking up decisive singles and doubles wins in the Fall. Ranked No. 1 in Florida and No. 13 in the nation before she came to Princeton, Pollner will be sure to replicate this success as the team goes into its spring season. Pollner sat down with the Daily Princetonian to talk all things tennis, from pump up songs to post match celebrations.
Daily Princetonian: How did you first start getting into tennis?
Gaby Pollner: I was watching my mom play at our beach club in New York when I was three, and I think I saw her hit an overhead or something and I was like, “Oh my god. I want to be able to do that.” It looked really fun, and then I started taking lessons after that.
DP: Any pre match rituals?
GP: I’m very methodical in my preparation, like I regrip all my rackets and make sure they’re ready.
DP: What’s your favorite pump up song?
GP: That changes, but our team pump up songs right now are “The Buzz” by Hermitude and “Deep Down Low” by Valentino Khan.
DP: What’s your favorite shot?
GP: My inside-out forehand.
DP: What’s been the best moment on the team so far?
GP: For Halloween, the men and women’s tennis teams have three freshman guys and three freshman girls, so we did the Scooby Doo gang. That was really fun.
DP: What’s your hidden talent?
DP: How has your transition been at Princeton as a freshman?
GP: It’s been really good with the help of my team. They’ve been so supportive and have been helping me choose classes and with time management, but I think, like every freshman, it’s a little stressful, especially during midterms week. Coming back from fall break, I feel more comfortable and in my element knowing a lot more people.
DP: What’s your favorite thing about Princeton?
GP: That everyone here is exceptional at what they do. You’re never going to meet someone who’s not interesting.
DP: Most stand-out moment in your tennis career?
GP: Probably when I won an ITF in Bermuda when I was 15.
DP: How do you celebrate a big win?
GP: If it’s a tournament win, I’ll definitely go get ice cream or something, but if it’s a win in the middle of a tournament, I don’t do anything too big.
DP: Three things you would bring to a desert island?
GP: My teacup Maltese dog named Blanca, my parents, and my phone and charger.
DP: What are you looking forward to most about the spring season?
GP: I’m really looking forward to play Ivy conference matches. I’ve seen so many college matches played but to participate in one, it’s going to be really fun. Tennis is such an individual sport, and in junior [leagues] you don’t get that team kind of environment and hype. I’m so excited for the team bonding.