Weekend tennis sees women rise, men fall

Quinn Hunter/The Carolinian

Quinn Hunter/The Carolinian

By Daniel Johnson, Staff Writer

Published in print Mar. 25, 2015

Coming into Saturday’s competition against Wofford, the Women’s Tennis team had gone a perfect 3-0 when hosting matches. Despite this, the team’s 1-6 road record, (including a loss in their only in-conference match versus Chattanooga on March 8) had put the team second to last in the Southern Conference standings.

Both the Men’s and Women’s tennis head coach, Jeff Trivette gave his opinion on the difference in the records.

“There is always a bit of comfort playing at home, but we just got to play better” he said.

“We played some tougher teams on the road so that has been harder, but we just have to play better.”

On the men’s side of the racket coming into Saturday’s match against East Tennessee State, the team’s record stood at 6-6, with two losses against their Southern Conference opponents Mercer and Samford. The losses had put the boys in the cellar of their conference.

As the month of March began, the Men’s team struggled out of the gate, falling in defeat in their first four matches played.

However, the team rallied to win back-to-back matches coming into the past weekend against Richmond and East Carolina on March 15 and March 18 respectively.

Seeing the progress the group had achieved after a few difficult matches in the first weeks of March, Coach Trivette talked about the difference between the Men’s team from the beginning of the month to now.

“We had some good practice, built our confidence is up, and I think we just played a little better” he replied.

“I think being at home and having some nice weather outside made a big difference.”

For the matches themselves last Saturday afternoon, both the Women’s and Men’s team competed against schools in the conference, as they looked to improved their Southern Conference record.

The men squared off against East Tennessee State University. For the Buccaneers, it was also their first SoCon match of the year. The women competed against the Wofford Terriers who had a 1-1 conference record heading into the match.

In the matches, perhaps the teams were told it was Opposite Day, as it seemed that UNCG tennis took the holiday seriously over the weekend.

While the Spartan women took six out of the seven single game matches, the Spartan men lost six out of their seven singles matches, with junior Daniel Mack the sole winner of his match.

The other distinction in the matches came on the doubles side of the net. While ETSU swept the three doubles matches 8-3, 8-5, and 8-6 against the men, the women took two out of the three in their double games.

Freshmen Corinne Blythe and seniors Kayla Gammie and Stephanie Falcon were the only Spartans tennis players to take both the doubles and singles matches that day. 

Coach Trivette after the game talked about how he coached both matches based on the needs of both teams.

“I knew that the women would have a better chance of getting a win today, so I stayed primarily focused on the men’s side” Trivette explained.

The coach also gave his take on  room for improvement for both teams.

“I like the development path we are on, both teams are working hard” he explained.

“We got some injuries we are trying to overcome, but when we get healthy, I believe we will be in good hands.”

This weekend will see an array of tennis matches for the Spartan Men and Women’s tennis teams.

The next matches for the Women’s team will be on Friday when they travel to Johnson City, TN to face East Tennessee State University, before coming home that Saturday to face Appalachian State on the UNCG Tennis Courts at noon.

Today at 3pm, the Men’s team will travel to Davidson to take on the Atlantic 10 powerhouse Wildcats who are currently 11-4.

On Sunday, the Spartan men will close out the week with a home match against The Citadel at noon.

Categories: daniel johnson, quinn hunter, Sports

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