Both the men’s and women’s UR tennis teams started off the season on a sour note by losing to LeMoyne College, 4-5 and 4-5.
In spite of the recent upheaval in the men’s tennis team, the new team came out and took four of the singles matches against LeMoyne. However, they could not win any of the doubles matches, losing all three doubles by an 8-5 score which led to their defeat in the match, 4-5.
However, according to head coach Anna Khvalina, the new team performed well.
“New team member Jason Maher was impressive in his comeback from a set deficit,” Khvalina said.
Senior Mike Burger did well from the first singles position, dominating his opponent for a 6-0, 6-2, and freshman Brian Bowman followed with a win at the second position, 6-4, 6-4. Senior Mike Shepheard won in his first varsity tennis match at the fifth single spot, 6-0, 6-2.
However, their doubles play did not match their singles success.
“Losing all three doubles matches cost us the overall match and our goal is to improve our doubles showing next time around,” Khvalina said. “The match was great for all the players to see what their individual weaknesses are and we can focus on working on those things in practice before the next match.”
Unfortunately, the women’s team fared no better than the men’s – they fell to LeMoyne 4-5, as well. The team started off well by winning the third and fourth singles and first and second doubles matches. However, they were defeated in the number one and two singles positions, ultimately leading to a LeMoyne victory.
“Inexperience showed up in singles play where three players were unable to close out their matches after being ahead,” Khvalina said. “The team performed well in doubles with everyone playing for the first time in their positions. We were able to win two of three doubles matches.”
Junior Alexa Perry and sophomore Mel Beckmann won their No. 1 doubles match. Sophomore Brittany Bowman and freshman Vicky Wells teamed up for No. 2 doubles and won.
They also won two singles matches. However, the rest of the team could not come through and the women fell 4-5.
“Our goals are to improve on the things that we did not get done this time, main one being a stronger finish. Tennis is not timed and a strong start does not guarantee anything,” Khvalina said.
Overall, both teams were starting off anew this season with many unexperienced players, and it was understandable that they struggled in their first match.
“We did have two new teams playing for the first time and we expect the learning curve to be steep for everyone,” Khvalina said. “Our schedule is very competitive and will force us to get better with every match, which is what we are going to do.”
The women’s team will practice in anticipation of their spring break trip, where they will take on Springfield College, Bryn Mawr College and University of Puerto Rico in Orlando, Fla.Maystrovsky is a member of the class of 2009.