The men’s tennis team will leave the confines of Ithaca this weekend to face Ivy League foes Dartmouth and Harvard. The team, which enters play after an off weekend, is 1-1 in Ivy competition, with a victory over Penn and a loss at the hands of Columbia.
Junior Zach Gallin was stellar against Columbia, winning in three sets at the No. 2 singles spot, then teaming up with classmate Scott Spencer to take the No. 1 doubles spot, 8-4.
“Dartmouth is a team that we should beat if we play up to our potential,” Gallin said. “Harvard is a very tough team, but if we play strong, we can outmatch them.”
Harvard, the perennial favorite in the Ivy League, comes in ranked No. 44 in the nation, fresh off of a 7-0 trouncing of Dartmouth.
If the Red is to prevail this weekend, it will need help from freshman Brett McKeon as well as the team’s juniors. McKeon took his match at the No. 4 singles spot against Columbia and fought off three match points to prevail at the No. 3 spot against Penn. Scott Spencer, who has over 10 singles victories already this season, also faced a match point before taking his match at the No. 4 spot against the Quakers, and then won in straight sets at the No. 6 spot against the Lions.
Also winning for the Red against Penn were juniors Michael Schlappig, Aravinda Neuman, and Scott Paltrowitz, all in straight sets.
The women’s tennis team (2-8, 0-2 Ivy) plays its last home games of the season this weekend when Dartmouth and Harvard visit the Reis Tennis Center. The weekend also marks the last home matches for seniors Nicole Chiu and Piper Lucas.
The matchup against Dartmouth today will be the Red’s best opportunity for an Ivy League home win, as No. 18 Harvard is the highest ranked squad in the Ancient Eight.
“They have some losses to teams we’ve beaten this year,” said head coach Tom Brownlie ’98. “Plus, our team is playing well and with high morale.”
Bronwlie intends to leave the lineup essentially the same with one exception. Giving Lucas her last chance on the court, Brownlie will likely insert the senior into both singles and doubles positions in the lineup. Lucas has been hindered from playing this season by various academic and other conflicts, but Brownlie believes that she will make a strong addition to the lineup.
The last match the team played was against nationally ranked Penn on March 29, when the Red fell 6-1 at home. The team has yet to notch an Ivy League win, and with five matches left, Brownlie is hopeful for at least one this weekend.
Archived article by Josh Dormont