September 29, 2006

M. Tennis Heads To ECAC Finals

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The men’s tennis team hopes to continue its strong play as it heads to Flushing Meadows, N.Y., for the ECAC championships. The Red will contend against the top-16 teams in the Northeast, including its opening-round draw with Ivy League rival Dartmouth.

“We are focusing on our first match against Dartmouth,” said senior tri-captain Dan Brous. “This is a big tournament and we want to take it one match at a time.”

Last weekend, the netters traveled to the Princeton Invitational where the team of Brous and senior tri-captain Josh Raff were victorious in the A flight doubles championship.

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“In doubles, Josh and I played really well,” Brous said. “I was happy to win one for the Big Red.”

Brous was satisfied with his overall performance last weekend and believes that the team is capable of continuing its solid play this season.

The Red was also victorious in the B flight singles consolation with a win from freshman Jonathon Fife, who continued his good play after reaching the finals of the B flight singles championship at the Cornell Invitational.

The netters have been plagued with injuries so far this season, including senior tri-captain Nick Brunner, who was injured last weekend and could not play in the Princeton Invitational. This time he will be back in action, as the Red travels for one of the most pivotal matches of the season.

“The ECAC is one of our biggest tournaments of the fall,” Raff said. “We all want to win and I think it’s possible.”

Without some of its best players, the netters had a slightly different look to the team but still managed to pull off two victories — demonstrating their strength and resilience.

“I think our team has the talent to do well,” Brous said. “Especially if we focus on each match.”

The team has been solid throughout the year, with good finishes at the season-opening Cornell Invitational and last weekend’s Princeton Invitational. The Red hopes to continue its success at the ECAC championships and to eventually accomplish its goals for the season.

“Our overall goal is to win the Ivy League,” Brous said. “But we don’t want to get ahead of ourselves. We need to concentrate on the ECAC this week.”

The Red can look to the ECAC championships to establish momentum as it heads through the dense component of its fall schedule. Cornell hopes to bring the same intensity it had throughout the season and that has brought it success in the past.

“My first goal is to beat Dartmouth in the first match,” said head coach Barry Schoonmaker. “They are probably the most improved team in the Ivy League.”