MEN’S TENNIS – Henrik Wiersholm Feature

[MUSIC PLAYING] [CHEERING] You know, Henrik Wiersholm has
been a symbol of consistency, a symbol of
toughness, confidence. He’s brought an edge to our team
in the most important moments. I think he was
brought up as always being one of the best
kids in his age group on a global scale. So he’s used to playing
on the big stage and being the favorite. And so he’s never shied
away from pressure. And pressure is what fourth
year Henrik Wiersholm received when he entered the
Virginia men’s tennis program back in 2014, a
program coming off its first national championship. He’s always been a guy
that’s been comfortable in that moment. And he’s handled
it extremely well. So for us, it’s been invaluable
to have him in our program because he’s just
a great competitor. Competitiveness was certainly
one of Henrik’s expectations. But some of his others
were a bit more in line with an average
incoming first year. I think I had kind of
similar expectations to any student that’s heading
to college that it’s going to be this insane experience. Meeting new people, fun times. I had the added benefit of being
a part of a D1 program, one of the top programs
in the country. I thought that was going to
be absolutely a blast getting to know the guys. And I also came in thinking
of a lot of pressure. We’d been so successful is
part of the reason I came here and part of the reason that
I had such high expectations. Expectations that
were met and exceeded as the Cavalier Program ran off
three consecutive NCAA titles in his first three years. But as is often the
case in athletics, when you’re on top
of the mountain, a challenge is often
lurking in the shadows. [SOMBER MUSIC] For Wiersholm, it was a shoulder
injury that sidelined him for the entire 2017-18 season. I recognized that
I had the potential to be a servant leader
for the other guys and care for them in that way
and build those relationships and help them along
on their path. I learned that tennis was
not my entire identity. That’s something
that can be tough, especially coming from
a background where I’d been training at
USTA since a young age. So I had to go through
that adverse period where I felt super
down all the time, not being able to
be on the court. I felt like I didn’t have
a purpose really because I wasn’t training, you know? I just saw that discipline
that makes him a great tennis player. I saw that discipline that
makes him a great student. And that discipline served him
well to get over that injury. And now he’s 100%. And he’s been a rock
force this year. We’ve got one last
tournament coming up, and I’m looking forward
to seeing Henrik finish his story here at UVA. A story that for Henrik
has evolved and matured over his time here on ground. The successes aren’t as
big as you think they are. And the losses don’t matter
as much as you think they do. We always talked about
how I was part of three national championships. And after the first one,
yeah, the next two weeks you feel amazing. But the feeling quickly fades. And then you’ve got to
refocus on what type of person you want to be and the
character that you want to bring and get back to work. Those successes just showed
me a path focused on character and putting yourself
out there and being passionate about something. And trying to do
100% can pay off. Not always, but it can. All those values that we talk
about over and over again, he’s going to be
signifying them. He’s going to be exemplifying
them out there on the court. And that’s why he’s
been so valuable for us. So the titles really don’t
matter as much as that. But these young men lead this
university with those values, and they can bring it
into their daily life.

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