Missouri Valley / Iowa

High School Friends To Play College Tennis Together

Tammy Arbuckle | May 28, 2020

High school seniors and close friends Colby Crawford of Waukee and Evan Moon of Polk City have both committed to play tennis together at Central College in Pella for the 2020-2021 school year. Both athletes are a part of Life Time Athletic’s Elite Tennis Academy, directed by tennis professional Arnold Wehrenberg. Colby and Evan spend 15-20 hours each week on the court with instruction, play and conditioning.  


Tennis is an individual sport, but a team game. Hence, teamwork and selflessness are a requirement in a college program. People lead in many different ways and a college team promotes leadership skills. Participation in college tennis can parallel other goals needed to become a successful adult. The collaborative effort of being on a college tennis team, and the focus on specific goals, serves as a guide for student-athletes in all walks of life.


Teamwork, selflessness, leadership and goal-setting all describe what it takes for an athlete to be successful. Few high school athletes are fortunate enough to continue their love of the game in a collegiate setting, and even fewer to do so alongside their high school friend.


We had the chance to visit with both Colby and Evan recently to see what these young men had to say. 


How long have you been playing tennis? 


Crawford: I have been playing tennis for almost five years now. I started when I was older, but I put a lot of time in once I realized how much I loved the sport. 

Moon: I’ve been doing tennis camps since I was in kindergarten with my friend, Will Blevins. Randy Daniels and Dennis Hoefle coached the camps, they always made tennis fun for me and they are the reason I started playing tennis.

Why did you choose Central College and what excites you to be a part of the men's tennis team?


Crawford: I chose Central because they have a solid men’s team as well as a good business program. It was a bonus that my good friend, Evan, was also going and would be on the tennis team as well. 

Moon: I chose Central because Coach seems like he really cares about his players. Also, when I went on my visit to Central, I was able to talk to the psychology professor, Keith Jones, who seemed like a great guy that could really help me.

What do you plan to study in college? 


Crawford: I want to major in Business with a minor in Accounting. 

Moon: Psychology

How does being an athlete make you a better person?


Crawford: Being an athlete has helped me learn how to get through tough situations. It has also taught me to problem solve. Learning how to be a competitor and a good sport has also been a result of playing tennis at a competitive level.  

Moon: In my opinion being an athlete does not necessarily make you a better person. Being an athlete gives you the opportunity to be a good person in situations that test your character. In tennis, there are too many people that are good people, but once they get out on the court, they have poor character. Sports can make or break a person’s character.

What is your favorite food to eat the night before a tournament?


Crawford: It became a tradition for me to eat pancakes and eggs from Cracker Barrel the night before a tournament. It became part of the tournament experience for my family and me, and somehow it seemed to be lucky for me. 

Moon: To be honest, there isn’t anything special that I like to eat the night before. I just try to drink more water the day before my tournament. 


What mental tool do you use under pressure?

Crawford: Typically, I sing a song in my head when I am under pressure. It helps me relax a little and not over think too much. 

Moon: When there is an important match, I try to stay zoned-in and throw all expectations out the window. I try to focus on myself and make sure I’m playing the best that I possibly can.

What is your best tennis stroke?


Crawford: My best tennis stroke is my back hand.

Moon: My best stroke is probably my forehand.


Who is your favorite professional tennis player?


Crawford: My favorite professional player is Grigor Dimitrov, because I love his athleticism, speed and creativity to use every shot.

Moon: My favorite professional player would be Federer.

Tennis club owners, tennis directors, teaching professionals and facilities all have a vested interest in college tennis. Future players and members of tennis facilities are the byproduct of college tennis. Whether a facility’s young people are Division I, II or III or Tennis on Campus candidates, one can’t measure the maturity, bonding and friendships that will emerge at the end of the student-athlete’s college journey.


USTA Iowa wishes Crawford and Moon all the best as they make their transition to college and pursue the sport they love. Go Dutch!

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