Movin’ on up for DePauw tennis

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The DePauw University Tigers women’s tennis team, now 13th in the nation, began conference play over the weekend in a victorious performance over Ohio Wesleyan University. The team dominated the tournament, only losing three games in both the singles and doubles matches.
Senior Caroline Emhardt and junior Maggie MacPhail who won the doubles matches, both had great things to say about their team and individual performances. The two are undefeated as a doubles unit this season.
Emhardt credits the duo’s friendship off the court for their team chemistry. On the technical side, MacPhail and Emhardt go into each match with a strategic game plan.
“We implement good consistency from the baseline and lots of activity and aggressiveness at the net,” MacPhail said. “We try to be quicker to cut balls off at the net with our volleys than our opponents.”
The Tigers aren’t afraid of pure domination.
“One of our biggest strengths as a team is our mental toughness and our camaraderie,” MacPhail said. “We are always fighting hard to win every point, every game, and every match regardless of the current score or who our opponents are.”
With a possible National Championship in mind, it is difficult to remain focused on the weekly matches.
“Our coach (Riggle) reminds us to focus on the present day,” Emhardt said. “The most important match is always the next match. Small steps will help us reach our big goals.”
The Lady Tigers are preparing for the InterCollegiate Tennis Association Indoor Nationals, which will take place this weekend at the University of Chicago.
“The competition there will be the toughest test of the season to date, with eight of the top 15 teams in the country,” said Emhardt.
The men’s tennis team also came out in a ruling fashion over the Battling Bishops. The DePauw men swept both singles and doubles over the weekend, moving them to 5-1 on the season.
Matt Santen, a first-year, came out with two impressive 6-0 wins.
“I was really excited for my match because this was one of my first, being a freshman,” says Santen.
Junior Eric Bruynseels also displayed a 6-0, 6-0 win over his opponent.
“I was controlling the points well with my forehand [this past weekend],” Bruynseels said. “I hope to continue this form against our next opponents [University of Chicago].”
The team has gained confidence and Santen believes they can make a post season run.
“I think the team believes we can [make a post season run] with all of our talent,” Santen said. “I know that Coach Riggle thinks so too.”
The men’s team has this weekend off, and will resume play on March 8th at the University of Chicago.