Brittney Chew | Sun Photography Editor

The women's tennis team welcomes Brown and Yale to Ithaca this weekend for a pair of key Ivy League games.

April 7, 2016

Tennis Prepares for Critical In-Conference Matchups

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As cold weather and wind welcomes back Cornellians, the women’s tennis team looks to chalk up two more Ivy win this weekend, when Brown and Yale visit Ithaca. The team is coming off a 2-1 weekend, with a win against Harvard, and losses to Columbia and Dartmouth.

This is the second meeting of the season between Brown and Cornell; the first was back in February when the Bears came away with the win at the ECAC Indoor Championships. The rematch comes allows the Red to possess additional knowledge of both Brown’s strengths and weaknesses.

Even still, the team hopes to leave the past behind, and look forward, according to senior Dena Tanenbaum.

“We need to go into the match this weekend with a fresh mindset and not worry about what happened in the last match,” Tanenbaum said.

The women are coming off a close loss to Dartmouth on Saturday, and they hope to turn things around in time for Friday’s contest.

“We were right there with them,” said sophomore Lizzie Stewart “We needed to play a bit smarter and more aggressive on the important points in the matches.”

The team did not come out of the weekend empty-handed however, posting a victory at Harvard on Friday.

Stewart credits the team’s fighting spirit and energy for the win.

“Everyone showed so much heart,” Stewart said “We won that match because even when we were down in the match, no one gave up.”

Given the forecast of inclement weather this weekend, it is likely the showdown will take place on indoor courts, which could have a big influence on the game. Being within the confines of four walls can have its advantage, with less external factors to worry about, such as wind or sunlight.

Additionally, the team is used to the conditions indoors, as the wonderful weather in Ithaca forces them indoors for practices and games about 95 percent of the time, could give the women a competitive edge, according to Tanenbaum.

The matchup against Brown begins on Saturday at noon. The Yale game takes place the following day at the same time. Both matches will take place Reis Tennis Center.

The men’s tennis team is also preparing for two Ivy clashes this weekend against Brown and Yale. This matches marks the Red’s fourth and fifth Ivy League matchups, and the men are hoping to improve to a 3-2 record, coming off a loss to Dartmouth on Sunday.

The big takeaway from Dartmouth for the team is to keep fighting until the absolute end, according to junior Dylan Brown.

“I’ve learned that’s it’s not over until it’s really over,” Brown said.

Brown and his doubles partner Stefan Vinti were just inches away from a 3-0 lead, but lost the game, 7-6. Cornell would go on to lose the contest, 2-4.

This game came after a win for the Red on Friday against Harvard. Brown credits the team for striking fast and hard.

“We played aggressively on the key points and didn’t wait for Harvard to make the initial move,” Brown said.

With the weather not looking promising for outdoor play, the will have to square off indoors. This plays into the men’s advantage, as they have played all but one of their matches so far indoors.

Brown’s facilities consist of just four indoor courts, so the match may take longer than usual. That being said, this gives the men opportunity to support their teammates during the matches, which can create energy for the player, according to Brown.

Play begins on Saturday at 1 p.m. at Brown and continues the following day at the same time at Yale.