2010 Eagle Tennis Preview
GS’ veterans are joined by a returning cast that includes juniors Thomas Bekkers (Antwerp, Belgium) and Mark Paetz (Munich, Germany) and sophomores Edio Castanhel (Criciuma, Brazil) and Alain Garrido (Vigo, Spain). The 2010 squad features added depth thanks in part to a talented crop of newcomers in junior Alex Yuille (Epson, England), a transfer from ABAC, and freshmen Sebastien Felt (Vienna, Austria), Juan Manuel Melian Puigventos (Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain) and Matthijs Verdam (Hilversum, The Netherlands).
The quest for a 2010 SoCon Tournament berth begins January 17 at preseason-ranked No.43 Georgia Tech. The Yellow Jackets wrapped up the 2009 regular season ranked 49th in the nation and return their entire squad which includes preseason No.4 Guillermo Gomez, while adding three additions. The advantage of starting non-conference play so early will be the six weeks the team has to prepare for conference play which begins on the road at Elon, March 6.
“With the condensed tournament format, it is very important for us to start our conference schedule strong and maintain that momentum and consistency throughout the spring,” said head coach Justin Miles. “Conference matches always hold importance every year, but this year with the tournament, conference matches are even more crucial to win. It makes recovering from a poor match even harder.”
With five players gone from 2009 - three vital to the lineup - the first order of business for Miles will be the reconfiguration of the 2010 team to account for the losses of 2009, especially in doubles. Spaces to fill include the No. 1 doubles, experience at No. 3 doubles and No. 1 singles spots.
“Not only did we lose three lefties in our lineup last year, but we ultimately lost hard working players who enjoyed playing the game,” stated Miles. “But when you look at what we have returning and coming in, I am confident that we will easily be able to fill the roles we lost and exceed our results from last season. We’ve already seen through the fall the possibilities we have for the spring.”
Although only accounting for one point in the college tennis game, the doubles point is crucial to capture. In 11 matches where the doubles point was won in 2009, the Eagles took 10 matches. Whereas, in the nine doubles points lost, the Eagles dropped eight of those matches.
“We know we need to be more aggressive in doubles this year and we know we need to be more aggressive at the net and close out matches when we hold the advantage,” Miles said. “But with the game we’ve played in the fall, we know we have potential starters that can help us exceed last year’s results and help guarantee a spot in the Southern Conference Tournament.”
- Category: Men's Tennis
- Published on Friday, 15 January 2010 14:19