Men take streak on road, women close homestand

The men’s team has climbed to 16th in the rankings with a 6-match win streak.

by Samuel Gordon

The Gophers menâÄôs tennis team will be taking its six-match win streak out west this weekend, and will be looking to christen its No. 16 ranking with a pair of victories against St. MaryâÄôs University, and No. 23 University of Washington.

Despite the ranking, head coach Geoff Young knows there is still more work to be done.

âÄúItâÄôs nice, itâÄôs fun to see, but weâÄôre more interested in just getting better every day,âÄù Young said. âÄúI know that sounds like a little bit of a cliché but thatâÄôs the most important thing, just getting better.âÄù

Senior captain Tobias Wernet echoed the sentiments of his coach.

âÄúWeâÄôre proud but I told the team in the meeting, I said, âÄòGuys, the work starts now,âÄô because this is the first computer ranking,âÄù Wernet said.

âÄúWeâÄôre happy to be here but it doesnâÄôt say much. We want to be here at the end of the season and maybe host the NCAA tournament.âÄù

This will be MinnesotaâÄôs second trip west this season. Its first took place Jan. 28, when No. 6 UCLA handed the Gophers their only loss of the year.

However, Young said that his team has improved since then, especially in doubles.

âÄúIn singles, weâÄôve just kind of been steady âĦ but in doubles, I think weâÄôve definitely gotten better, and figured a few things out.âÄù

Washington will be MinnesotaâÄôs seventh ranked opponent of the season. The Gophers are currently 5-1 against ranked opponents, and Young knows how important ranked wins are.

âÄúThe ranked wins help our positioning at the end of the season, thatâÄôs for sure.âÄù


Women look to close out home stand in strong fashion

The Minnesota womenâÄôs tennis team will conclude its six-match homestand this weekend with matches against Wisconsin and Nebraska.

This will be the first action for the Gophers since their loss to N.C. State on Feb. 20, and the time off has been quite important for the team.

âÄúWe have a lot of nicks and bruises and illnesses right now,âÄù head coach Tyler Thomson said. âÄúWeâÄôre trying to take this opportunity to give people extensive time to just lay off the activity.âÄù

Thomson said doubles play has been the emphasis in practice, and with good reason.

So far this season, MinnesotaâÄôs success has hinged on the doubles point. The Gophers are undefeated when winning the point, and winless when losing it.

âÄúStep one is getting some consistency with our pairings and hopefully with everyone being healthy thatâÄôs something we can achieve,âÄù Thomson said. âÄúBeyond that, weâÄôre just trying to get back to the basics of being aggressive, dictating play and trying to make our opponents react to us rather than the other way around.âÄù

With only four home matches remaining after this current stretch, handling business at home is crucial for Minnesota and could play a big role in how its season plays out.

âÄúIt is an advantage being at home, and this is a very, very ripe opportunity for us this weekend,âÄù Thomson said. âÄúItâÄôs important that we bring our best.âÄù