Published: March 17, 2016
The University’s men’s and women’s tennis teams are set to return to the court Friday.
Both teams will play four games in Orlando, Florida.
Last year the men’s team finished 5-10, including a conference record of 3-5. Entering this year, the Royals have been preparing hard in hopes of a better season.
“During intercession we all played individually back where we all live,” sophomore Keller McGurrin said. “We did a lot of workout sessions with trainers in the Byron center, too. We also did a lot of hitting indoors.”
McGurrin went 7-10 in singles and 5-8 in doubles as a first-year member of the team. McGurrin was also named second-team All Landmark Conference.
After the disappointing 2015 season, McGurrin said being more vocal on the court will be a key for the Royals’ success.
“Communication is definitely something we improved on from last year, especially during doubles,” McGurrin said. “The better we communicate, the most consistently we can get the ball in play and be more competitive against some of the better teams in the conference.”
The women’s team finished the fall season with an impressive record of 5-1, but the team still did everything it could to improve before the spring.
“We made a lot of changes off the court. We focused on footwork and agility by doing a lot of sprinting and movement drills,” senior Emily Walsh said. “We’ve also been doing a lot of lifting and cardio, so we think that’s definitely going to make a huge improvement on the court.”
Walsh said despite the team’s influx of youth, the potential is clearly there.
“Courtney (Barron) and I have been stressing to the team where we can be, even though we’re so young. This team has so much potential,” Walsh said.
With the team relatively young, Walsh said the goals are still big.
“Expectations are pretty high this year, even though we have such a young team,” Walsh said. “We’re ranked No. 2 in the preseason poll, and last time that happened we won the conference. We would love to have that happen again.”
Both teams begin their respective seasons against Springfield College in Orlando, Florida. The men’s team plays at 11 a.m., while the women’s team play at 11:30 a.m.
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