Women's tennis wants more

By Tyler Trumbauer
Sports Editor/Spectator

The Edinboro women’s tennis team finished fifth out of the seven schools in the western division of the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference last season. To some that would indicate a struggling program. 

For the Fighting Scots, it was all about the competition. 

“We lost to about four teams last season that made the NCAA [National Collegiate Athletic Association] tournament,” head men’s and women’s tennis coach Lee Underwood said. “We play in a really tough division. Two teams from our division made the NCAA tournament with both making it to the Round of 16 and one advancing to the top eight. The competition for the women in our division is very tough.” 

As far as their 11-12 record overall, that can be chalked up to close decisions in matches, according to Underwood. 

“I think we lost about seven matches that were either 5-4 or 6-3 [scores]. We were very close to having the potential to be very good. We just fell a little short, Underwood said. 

The ladies from last year’s squad have grown and are prepared for a better 2014-15 season. The lineup includes senior Oranza Carrillo, sophomore Raquel Holiday, and sophomore Nevena Kulina, among others who are certain to make an impact this season. 

With NCAA tennis having such a long break during the season, Underwood says a lot of training is in the girls’ hands. “NCAA rules limit us to a certain number of hours for group practice. Some players will go to the racket club in Erie. Others are from other countries that can practice in good weather over the winter and others aren’t as fortunate in their location.” 

While the men are trying to replicate their success from last season, the focus for the women is trying to get over that hill. 

“Getting the women to the NCAA tournament is what we are trying to do,” Underwood said. “Last year we were playing close with a few of those teams that made it to the tournament. Obviously, that is the goal we are working towards.” 

The women start it off on Sept. 13 and 14 with the PSAC singles and doubles championships at West Chester University. They commence team competition with two home matches, one on Sept. 17 against Alderson Broaddus University and on Sept. 19 the Fighting Scots welcome West Liberty University to Edinboro.

Tyler Trumbauer is the sports editor for The Spectator. He can be reached sports.spectator@gmail.com