Freshman tennis players making transition from Spain

By Santiago Martinez-Caro |

After playing tennis for most of their lives, Esther Santiago and Inigo Landaluce have made the transition from Madrid, Spain to the tennis courts at Flagler College.

Landaluce, who is on the men’s team, and Santiago, who is on the women’s, came to Flagler College to get a degree in Business. So far Flagler has exceeded both their expectations.

This is Santiago’s first time in the United States. But Landaluce visited for the first time three months ago.

“I found Flagler because I came to visit colleges in the United States and because I have always wanted to study in Florida,” Landaluce said.

Both Landaluce and Santiago have adapted quickly to the lifestyle in the United States.

“I like a lot of everything, the atmosphere in the college, the classes and the people,” Santiago said.

The freshmen are looking forward to their first season with Flagler.

“It will not be easy but we are in a good position to do well this season,” Santiago said.

Having so many nationalities on the men’s and women’s teams adds chemistry, Landaluce said.

“[To] learn about other cultures–it is fun to have friends from all over the world,” he said.

They both are unsure about their plans after they graduate from Flagler, but currently they are focusing on school and tennis.

“As of now, I’m not sure what I will do with my tennis career, only time will decide,” Santiago said.

So far this season, both Landaluce and Santiago have contributed with wins for the men’s and women’s tennis teams. Santiago earned a 6-1, 6-1 win over Palm Beach Atlantic’s Jessica Wharton. Landaluce earned a 6-2, 6-2 win over Palm Beach Atlantic’s Eric Wade.

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