Tennis season goes back and forth
There have been many ups and downs for the two Puget Sound tennis teams this season.
The women’s team sits at 2-6 with a 1-6 NWC record. The team picked up its first two wins of the seasons on March 7 and March 8 beating both the College of Idaho and Willamette 5-4.
In the match against College of Idaho, the team was led by sophomore Elizabeth Chao (Oakland, Calif.) who won her match (6-3, 6-2) as the No. 1 singles player for the Loggers and as a part of the No. 1 doubles team (8-6) with first year Tresa Bild (Boise, Idaho).
First year Farrell Ahlf (Rocklin, Calif.) then won both her singles (6-0, 6-2) and doubles match (8-5) with partner Tamara Runnicles (San Francisco, Calif.). Senior Alison Goo (Honolulu, Hawaii) sealed the win for the Loggers, winning her singles match in a dramatic three games (4-6, 6-2, 6-3).
“It was really exciting for the team as a whole [to get the first win of the year],” Ahlf said, “Everyone was so happy with their performances that day.”
The women’s Loggers team continued its newfound momentum and grabbed its first conference win the next day against Willamette.
The Logger women won four singles matches, with Ahlf (6-1, 6-1), Bild (6-4, 5-7, 6-2), Runnicles (6-2, 6-1) and Goo (6-3, 6-3) all taking their respective match ups.
Ahlf and Runnicles won the tiebreaking doubles match 8-2 to seal the win for the team.
The Logger women cooled off after its two game win streak the next weekend and dropped its next two matches against Whitman and Whitworth, losing 8-1 in both matches.
The women’s Loggers team currently has six matches left in its season.
On March 28, the Loggers host Bellevue College for its final nonconference match of the year.
Afterwards, the team closes out the next three weeks with five conference matches including rematches with both Whitman and Whitworth and April 18 and April 19 respectively.
The Loggers currently sit in eighth place in conference and are holding onto slim hopes of qualifying for the conference tournament by finishing in the top four.
While it is not impossible, the Logger women will need to win out and get some help from other teams along the way.
The Logger men’s team fell to 0-7 on March 14, losing to Whitworth 8-1 to conclude conference play in March, which also included losses to George Fox (9-0), Willamette (6-3) and Whitman (9-0).
The effort and fight in the Logger men has not necessarily been reflected by the final match tally.
Several of the singles matches have gone to three games in several different losses.
The team so far has been led by junior Daniel Deuel (Oakland, Calif.) and first year Andrew Struzenberg (Greeley, Colo.).
In the tough 9-0 loss to George Fox, Struzenberg led the team-winning six sets while Deuel won five, even though both lost their respective singles matches.
In the next match up against Willamette, Deuel won his No. 1 singles match (6-4, 6-4).
While the Logger men have struggled so far this season, the team has a great opportunity to pick up its first win of the season against Bellevue College on March 27 in a nonconference match up.
The team then closes out the season with five straight conference match ups in April, including two against rival PLU.
With the slow start dooming the team’s postseason possibilities, the Logger men are playing out the rest of this season for pride and for confidence in the future.
Overall, neither team has had the season they likely envisioned but the future is bright for Logger tennis.
The men’s team has only one senior and one junior.
The other eight members of the team are underclassmen with six first-year players.
The women’s team is in a similar situation with four of the seven team members being first-year players.
The early experience these young players are getting now should make the team a force down the road.