De Anza badminton sets athletic and academic records

Naomi Fuhrmann, Staff Writer

The De Anza College badminton team went undefeated for the past two years. This year’s team is beginning the season with realistic expectations and immense motivation.

Dedicated De Anza badminton coach of seven years Mark Landefeld, spoke highly of the undefeated team from the past two years.

“Our top four players were arguably the top four players in the state,” Landefeld said. “The only loss they have had was playing each other in tournaments. We don’t have a top four like that, and I’ve never heard of a top four at community college like that.”

In addition to being incredibly capable athletically, last year’s team was also academically successful.

The team received the highly regarded California Community College Association Scholar Team Award, with a 3.5 grade point average and achieved above average in the sport of badminton.

“It’s not too hard to manage school and practices together.”  said Loc Nguyen, a player on the team this year.
Last year’s team left its mark on badminton history at De Anza college, but it will be hard for this year’s team to match the success of the past.

Yet, they are realistic in evaluating their abilities and in their expectations for the season.

“It would be unfair to this group to expect anything close to last year, but we expect to learn how this group competes and how they make adjustments in matches,” Landefeld said. “How they take their strengths and apply them against opponents.”

“I think we’re still going to be very strong within the coast conference, because we had a preseason tournament and we did fairly well.” Landefeld said.

“This is my first year playing and it’s been a good learning experience so far,” said Angelina Lee, a first year team member.

She said she values her teammates and believes this season is going to go well. “I think that we have a few players that are really strong and are strong even compared to universities and not just community college.”