On the men’s side, the Georgia Tech tennis team had a rough spring, and the men are looking to rebound and get things off on the right foot in 2014. Saturday begins the 2014 spring dual match season with two home court matches Saturday against Georgia Southern (12 noon) and Stetson (5 p.m.) at the Ken Byers Tennis Complex.
The men’s team went 8-16 last spring but have four new players. The Eagles were 11-9 overall last year, 6-4 in the Southern Conference, while the Hatters were 15-4 with a 6-2 record in the Atlantic Sun Conference.
“I don’t know how much can be said until we get on court and evaluate ourselves,” head coach Kenny Thorne told RamblinWreck.com. “We have a team that is passionate and dedicated to doing the right thing on the court. We have stressed a fearless pursuit of solid fundamental tennis. Only competition can show where we are in that process. It will be great to finally get going this weekend against Georgia Southern and Stetson.”
Thorne is hoping his group of new players gives the team the added spark to get them rolling in the right direction. They include Carlos Benito, a freshman from Madrid, Spain who went 11-7 in the fall, and sophomore Casey Kay of Atlanta, a transfer from Georgia who went 4-2 in singles in the fall, and freshman Cole Fiegel of Alachua, Fla., who went 6-7 in the fall in singles.
“Doubleheaders are tough but we need the competition,” said Thorne. “We are playing a new scoring format for the beginning of the season which should shorten the match times which is good on double header days. Everybody is simply looking forward to getting on the court.”
The new scoring format Thorne is speaking about is the Intercollegiate Tennis Association’s experimental format in which all matches will feature “no-ad” scoring, and all sets will have a tiebreaker when the score reaches 5-all. In doubles, matches are played to six rather than eight.
Admission to both matches will be free, but parking around the complex may be at a premium with a noon basketball tip-off for the men’s team against Notre Dame.