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Men’s, women’s tennis teams prep for big weekend events

John Smith

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Both the men’s and women’s tennis teams are gearing up for big competitions this weekend as the winter break for both teams approaches, and gives each one a chance for some relaxation until January.

On the men’s side, the upcoming event will be the first home matches of the season, taking place Saturday at the Sheldon Coleman Tennis Complex at WSU.

“It’s always good to play at home,” men’s tennis head coach Brad Louderback said. “It’s nice to be able to host some local teams. We’re really looking forward to these three teams that are all very well-respected in their leagues.

The men’s team will play all day Saturday, facing off with Seminole State, before later taking on McPherson College and Cowley. The match-ups will provide for some great competition, the level of which Louderback said he will deal with as it plays out.

“Right now, I have a lineup set for Seminole, but we still have a few more days left of practice and anything can happen in those practices,” he said. “I’m just going to wait until after our first match before I decide the next match. I’m looking forward to it. It’s going to be a tough match.”

This will be the last event of the year for the men’s team until 2016 rolls around, and the importance to finish strong and set a good tone for the season is not lost on the players.

“It’s very important,” senior Tin Ostojic said. “It’s like the beginning of the season, and the end of the year. Three important matches can make a big statement for January and the start of the season.”

Meanwhile, the women’s team will travel this weekend to Nashville to compete in the June Stewart Invitational, marking the first time in nearly a month the team has competed outside a conference or ITA-sanctioned event.

The last few weeks have been physically demanding on the team, but are weeks that have shown success and determination across the players.

“Last week was probably the strongest tournament we played for the fall,” women’s head coach Colin Foster said. “We had some good results, and getting back out there the following weekend is a good chance to gain some momentum.

“Physically they’ve been pushed, but we got some rest after the weekend and we are ready to get right back at it.”

The women’s team has one more tournament after the upcoming one in Nashville, but that does not take away from the importance to perform well at the June Stewart Invitational.

“We have had some really great results so far,” Foster said. “But the goal throughout the semester and the whole year, of course, is just to keep getting better. It’s been a really strong semester so far so we are going to keep building.”

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