Sophomore Avinash Reddy and junior Dan Willifford served up impressive performances Sept. 27 and 28 at the Intercollegiate Tennis Assocation Championships at Vassar College. Reddy lost in the quarterfinals 4-6, 6-2, 6-3 against first-ranked New York University’s Demetris Leontis and Williford and Reddy made it to the finals of the doubles tournament before succumbing 8-3 in the finals to NYU’s first-ranked team of Leontis and Rich Salem.
“Avinash played really well at ITAs,” head coach Chris O’Brien said. “He made it to quarters and lost to the guy that was ranked number one and won the tournament.”
Reddy was the only player to extend Leontis to three sets in the whole tournament, which included all Div. III schools from New York State.
Freshmen Eric Prince and Josh Bruce-Black both won their matches, along with sophomore Brian Shenker. All three lost their second round match.
Williford and Schoenherr both were upset in the first round. Sixth ranked Willford was knocked off 8-6 by Skidmore College’s Andrew Watson and captain Schoenherr was upended in the same round 8-5 by Hamiton College’s John Pearson.Both turned in impressive consolation bracket performances with Schonherr making it to the semi-finals and Willford losing in the final round of the bracket.
All in all, the weekend was a success, gaining valuable experience for the young team. UR brought six players to ITAs, while most of the competition only included the top three from their squads.
“It definitely helped build experience,” Reddy said.
Reddy pointed out that most of the team was playing a seed higher than they were supposed to in the fall season because junior Colin Ryan was studying abroad.
With Ryan returning, and the experience the team gained in the fall, the spring semester looks bright for the men.
“Spring is our big season,” O’Brien said. “It is really our main focus.”
The ITAs were the last tournament for the men until Feb. 1. To stay in shape, Reddy says the team will hold informal pracitces, weekly simu-lated matches and will encourage members to work out regularly.
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