- Letters to Editor
By Lance Melching
The men’s tennis team continued its hot start of the season by winning two matches Saturday.Now they’ll lay their 4-0 record on the line against possibly the best team to visit Richmond all year.
Friday morning at 10 a.m. at the Greg Adams Tennis Center the Colonls will square off against UT-Chattanooga.
The Mocs enter the contest with a 2-1 record including a 7-0 beat down of defending OVC champion Tennessee Tech on Jan. 21.
Head Coach Rob Oertel says that the men’s team will know how good it is after the UT-Chattanooga match.
Playing with confidence and certainty will be the critical factors, Oertel explained.
“The talent levels are gonna be pretty similar,” he said. “It’s gonna come down to what’s upstairs.”
The men will follow the UT-Chattanooga match with a 2 p.m. match against Division II Abilene Christian.
The team can’t expect an easy afternoon win, however, as Abilene is better than some teams on its schedule Oertel said.
Oertel is afraid the team might suffer a letdown after playing a big match against UT-Chattanooga.
The team will conclude its weekend home stand with a 5 p.m. match against Wright State on Saturday.
Men advance to 4-0
Depth continued to be the key to success for the men’s team as victories in fifth and sixth singles secured a comeback 4-3 win over UNC-Greensboro at the Greg Adams Tennis Center this past Saturday.
After the Spartans won the doubles point and raced out to straight-set victories in first and fourth singles, the Colonels were faced with a 3-1 deficit.
The lone Eastern point was sophomore Florian Kiefer’s victory in second singles.
Freshman Chad Becker kept the Colonels alive with a three-set victory at third singles which set the stage for freshman Zach Itzstein and sophomore Mel Segota at fifth and sixth singles.
The two Colonels came through with straight-set victories.
Itzstein and Segota have been reliable for the Colonels in singles. Each are 4-0 this spring prompting Oertel to say he’ll probably try bumping one or both of them up in upcoming matches.
Oertel said that the Spartans were surprisingly good and went on to win two points in a dual meet against the University of Kentucky the following day.
“Our depth made the difference and I’ll think all year I’ll be saying that,” Oertel said.
The Colonels downed the University of the Cumberlands 7-0 later that afternoon.
Women win one, drop two
The women’s tennis team recorded its first victory of the season, dropping the University of the Cumberlands 7-0 Friday before falling to Xavier 6-1 later that afternoon and Indiana State 7-0 on Sunday.
Sophomore Svetlana Pimenova led the way against the University of the Cumberlands with a straight set victory at first singles.
“Svetlana is as talented as any player we’ve ever had in the program,” Oertel said.
In fact, the talent level is very similar to last season and the outlook could improve quickly for the women’s team, Oertel explained.
The return of senior Terin Roof should help. Oertel said she rejoined the team full-time this week and will make the most of the two-week gap before the team’s next match on Feb. 9 against Wright State.
“She’ll need that two weeks too tune up,” Oertel said.
2006 OVC Player of the Year Meredith Giles could also return to the team shortly.
Her eligibility is in question after she spent last semester at the University of Houston.
Oertel said the documents concerning her eligibility have been sent to the NCAA and he hopes to hear a ruling by the middle of next week.
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