January 26, 2012

M. TENNIS | Young Team’s Talent Shows Potential

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Coming off decisive victories against Boston and Buffalo on Jan.  22, the men’s tennis team will travel to Columbus, Ohio, this weekend for one of the biggest weekends in collegiate tennis. Nationally ranked No. 44, the Red (2-0) will face some of the nation’s most storied programs at the Intercollegiate Tennis Association Kick-Off Weekend tournament.The Red is set to open the weekend against host No. 3 Ohio on Saturday, before playing against either No. 28 Notre Dame or No. 29 Indiana on Sunday. This weekend the Red will have a chance to leave its mark on the national scene. If Cornell claims the victory over Ohio, the team will hand the Buckeyes their first home loss in 131 matches.  Though Cornell graduated five of its top six singles players last May, the squad has a promising incoming freshman class. Despite the tough competition that the Red will face, the young team expressed its confidence in its ability to compete with the some of the nation’s best. Junior Jared Karson shared his excitement for the younger players on the team who will be competing in Ohio this weekend. “We have a group of extremely talented freshman starters,” Karson said. “This will be a great chance for them to see some great competition.” The Red’s lineup will include one sophomore and five freshmen — a testament to the amount of talent the younger members possess. Although half of the members on the team are freshmen, Cornell does not plan to use its mostly rookie status as an excuse, according to freshman Alex Sidney, who says he is confident in the ability of the team to compete at a high level. “We’re trying to show people that we’re not just a young team,” Sidney said. “We really do have what it takes.”  The Red will attempt to continue on its undefeated streak in hopes of defending its 2011 Ivy League title. The players have credited new head coach Silviu Tanasoiu with the team’s success so far.“[Tanasoiu] has us playing against some great competition, which is in direct correlation with the high expectations he has for us,” Sidney said. “We know what we have to do and there are no excuses.”

Original Author: Edward McNelis