Members of the Wisconsin Club Tennis team went to California over winter break and came back to Madison with more than just great tennis memories, as game show devotees saw last week.
Andrew Rebhun, the president and founder of the club, thought it would be exciting to have the entire team attend a taping of a TV show while on the trip. ?The Price Is Right? was the team?s No. 1 choice.
?Everyone for some reason remembers growing up watching ?The Price is Right? when they were sick from school.? Rebhun said.
They never expected it to turn out how it did.?
?They interviewed the entire team before the show,? sophomore Caitlin Kammerait said.? ?We knew that it was a possibility that one of us could get called down to contestants? row because we were in such a big group. We definitely weren?t expecting anyone to actually get called down though.?
Rebhun was one of the first contestants to get called down and actually made it on stage to compete for a Chevy Cobalt.
?When Andy made it on stage and when the host, Drew Carey, told him that he was playing for a car, we were all in disbelief,? Kammerait said.
Rebhun, who wore his Wisconsin Club Tennis shirt to the show, played a game requiring him to pick a number from one to six. Behind one of those numbers was the car. Rebhun looked out into the audience toward his teammates for help.
?We were all yelling the number four to Andy,? Kammerait said, ?A couple of us are huge Packer fans, and the number four for Brett Favre just seemed like the lucky number.?
And lucky it was. Carey pulled the number four off the board and revealed a picture of a car.
?It was a dream of mine since I was 5 years old to be on ?The Price is Right.? The best part of the experience was being there with my teammates.? Rebhun said. ?While I was on stage, it was very humbling to turn around and see my best friends, my teammates (and) my biggest supporters cheering me on.?
The episode aired last Friday, and Rebhun decided to throw a celebration when the show aired. He had about 100 people packed in his apartment. None of the attendees other than those on the trip knew he had been called down to be a contestant, much less won a car.
?It was funny and ironic to them,? Rebhun said, ?They were seeing me on CBS with Drew Carey jumping up and down on stage living out one of my childhood dreams. They all know that I used to watch ?The Price is Right? and how much I had always wanted to be a contestant. My dad couldn?t believe that I was able to cross that off of my lifelong list of dreams.?
Rebhun experienced a huge victory on ?The Price is Right,? but victory is nothing new to him and his teammates. They have established themselves as one of the top club tennis teams in the nation and sit near the top of the college club tennis rankings.
?We are the No. 2 team in the country out of 300 teams,? Rebhun said.
The UW team faced great competition while in California and came out with big wins. Since the trip to California, they have competed in New Orleans, Indiana and Michigan. The traveling involved with the team has been a perfect way for members to grow closer to one another and also to play competitively against collegiate club tennis teams across the country.
Their most recent tournament was the Midwest Championships that took place in Madison at the Nielsen Tennis Center this past weekend.? The UW club team finished with a huge first-place victory over 24 teams from all over the Midwest.?
?With a first-place victory, the entire team did well with big wins coming from Kevin Rolston, Sarah Mackay, Scott Peiser and Amanda Sta. Romana, who all went above and beyond their normal playing ability,? Rebhun said.
The team has also qualified for the National Championships, which will be held in Cary, N.C., from April 16-20.? There they will face the best teams in the country, including Texas A&M, who currently holds the No. 1 spot.
?The team is really looking for a victory,? said Rachel Wein, vice president of the team. ?We didn?t make it to the finals at Nationals last year, but we are much more ready this year.?