Tennis Teams To Take On Patriot League Opponents

fter getting a much needed weekend of rest, the Colgate men’s and women’s tennis teams prepared to head into one of the most important weekends of the season against Patriot League opponents Lafayette and Lehigh. Unquestionably, the weekend has important Patriot League Tournament implications and both teams have an opportunity to solidify a spot in the tournament.

Coming into the weekend, the men have a respectable 1-1 record in the Patriot League. The Raiders beat Lehigh and Lafayette last season and they will look to do the same this weekend, as they look to build on last weekend’s upset victory over Navy by continuing to play great tennis.

“After beating Navy, we cannot let up and we need to continue playing strong,” head coach Patrick Fisher said. “If we can finish the season strong, we are looking at a two or three seed in the Patriot League Tournament. We still have a lot of work, but we need to take advantage of the opportunity at hand. As long as we have the same effort as against Navy, I think we will come out on top.”

Lafayette come into this weekend’s matchup with a 0-2 record in the Patriot League and the Raiders will seek to maintain the Leopards’ winless PL record. Lehigh is 0-1 in the league, but has been having an excellent year overall, sporting a 9-3 overall record. Colgate, meanwhile, has a record of 4-10, but that is not indicative of how the team has played this season.

After a weekend away from match play, the men are excited for this weekend’s contests.

“It was great to get our guys rested this past week and it will help us a lot going into this weekend,” junior Chris Innes said. “The whole team is really looking forward to this weekend’s crucial matches and we hope the Navy match will give us momentum heading into the final weeks of the season.”

Not to be overlooked, the Raider women’s team is having a better season with a 7-6 overall record, despite an 0-1 record in the Patriot League. Like the men, the women will also be playing Lafayette and Lehigh, both of whom are much improved this year.

The Leopards are 0-2 in the Patriot League, while the Mountain Hawks have a 1-0 league mark. This weekend is absolutely crucial to the women’s chances of qualifying for the Patriot League Tournament and the Raiders will be looking to get two victories.

Given the way his team has played this season, Fisher knows the women will give a maximum effort.

“Both Lehigh and Lafayette are much improved and we really hope we can get our first Patriot League victory this weekend,” Fisher said. “I have stressed to the girls about playing smarter in tighter matches and learning to keep control under pressure. We are at the most important time of the season and we have a great opportunity in front of us. If the girls play at their highest level, there is no reason why we should not qualify for the Patriot League Tournament.”

In her second season on the team, sophomore Alex Seaton is savoring the opportunity to qualify for the PL Tournament.

“We are definitely looking forward to the matches this weekend versus Lafayette and Lehigh,” she said.”We have improved so much thisyear and this is our chance to show our Patriot opponents that we are ready to compete and win.”

Both the men and women have worked very hard all season long and have done a great job of fighting through a myriad of injuries. The weekend off has given all the players a chance to get healthy and they come into this weekend extremely motivated to put their mark on the Patriot League season.

The season is in its final stages and this is the time when players have to step up. The race for the Patriot League Tournament is tight for both the men and women, but with smart playing and teamwork the Raiders should be successful.