TENNIS | Crosstown Battle Awaits
Published: Friday, February 8, 2013
Updated: Friday, February 8, 2013 02:02
The Georgetown men’s and women’s tennis teams find themselves in very different positions as they both come off dual matches on the road last weekend — while the girls handled Duquesne and Pittsburgh to sweep their Friday-Saturday slate, the men’s team fell in two hotly contested matches to Duquesne and Toledo.
The women will look to build on their impressive performance last weekend against crosstown rival George Washington this Saturday, when they face off against a squad riding momentum from a 5-2 victory over Howard last weekend.
The match against the Colonials will be an excellent opportunity for the Hoyas to prepare for the Big East season, which will pick up in earnest after this week. The Blue and Gray started the conference season off the right way against Pitt — pulling off a road victory in the second day of a dual match — and will try to keep things rolling as they briefly return to their non-conference schedule.
George Washington is certainly no pushover, but look for the women’s team to continue its impressive start with another strong showing on Saturday.
The men’s team, meanwhile, will look to rebound against Penn on Wednesday, a game that Head Coach Gordie Ernst has had circled on the calendar since before the season even started. The Quakers, who dominated the Hoyas 6-1 in the two teams’ meeting last year, present an opportunity for the men’s team to earn its first 2012-13 victory over an Ivy League opponent.
Penn is likewise fresh off a dual-match weekend, in which it fell to in-state rival Penn State 1-6 and defeated Buffalo 6-1. In an interview with The Hoya last week, Ernst made clear that he wants his team to start earning respect and building a national reputation. Defeating an Ivy League team on its own court would certainly be a great way to do just that.
The men’s side has battled hard in all its matches this season, but so far, it has struggled to find a way to pull out close contests. Penn will provide a tough test, but that also means it should be a good measuring stick for how close Georgetown is to getting over the hump and starting to win competitive matches.