By Michael Freeman, Sports Writer
The Wildcat tennis teams began the spring season last week with several victories: The women start the year with a record of 4-1, while the men begin 1-1.
Last Wednesday, the women opened their season with a 9-0 win over Eastern New Mexico, followed by a 6-1 loss to Texas Tech. On Friday, the women impressively defeated Stephen F. Austin, Prairie View A&M and the University of Texas-Pan American in the ACU Indoor Classic.
Saturday, the men lost 5-1 to Texas Tech, but bounced back with a 6-1 win over Prairie View A&M.
“It was a good start,” head coach Hutton Jones said.
In their first match on Wednesday, the Wildcat women dominated Eastern New Mexico, as ACU won nine matches without dropping a set. However, the Texas Tech Red Raiders, ranked 61st in NCAA Division I women’s tennis, downed ACU 6-1 later that day.
Jones said the loss revealed some needed areas for improvement, especially in doubles play. But the women recovered with a strong performance in the ACU Indoor Classic. The Wildcats tore through three NCAA Division I opponents, beating Stephen F. Austin, 6-1, and then swept both Prairie View A&M and the University of Texas-Pan American by the same score of 7-0.
“I was pleased,” Jones said. “To beat three Division I schools on our courts was real nice.”
The Wildcat men opened their season with a disappointing loss to one of the best teams in Division I men’s tennis, Texas Tech. The Red Raiders won 5-1, with senior George Carstens picking up the lone ACU win in the match.
The men rebounded in their next match-up against Prairie View A&M with a 6-1 victory. Although the final score does not imply it, ACU worked hard to beat the defending Southwestern Athletic Conference champions. Five of the six singles matches went to three sets. The doubles play was also highly contested.
“I’m really proud of the men,” Jones said.
This week, the women take a three-day tour of Arkansas to play against Henderson State, Central Arkansas, Ouachita Baptist, Northeastern State and Southeastern Oklahoma State. The men go on the road as well as they face the University of Texas-Pan American and Lamar University this Friday.