Weber leads Gophers in singles

The senior has a 8-3 record in singles so far this season, the best on the team.

by Jack White

With the loss of Leandro Toledo last spring, the Gophers came into the year needing extra help to defend their Big Ten title.
Senior Ruben Weber has done his best to shoulder the load, and his 8-3 singles record is the best on the team.
“He brings the most experience in the lineup,” head coach Geoff Young said. “The way he brings a lot of energy is a big lift for our team, and he’s got big ground strokes, plays a very aggressive game, so he can really take it to anyone he plays.”
Weber came to Minnesota from Alzey, Germany, and plays for a German team in the summer. The senior said playing for that team has been enjoyable because he’s known some of the players his whole life. 
“We have really good opponents,” Weber said. “It’s just a lot of fun seeing those guys again because I’m here most of the time.” 
He’s also found success stateside this year, recording a 7-3 record in the fall. He took second place at the Lakewood Ranch Invitational in November despite being sick during the competition.  
“I performed really well there,” Weber said. “I had the flu the week before, and I made the decision to go a day before. It turned out to be a good one.”
Weber also advanced to the round of 16 in singles at the International Tennis Association Region Championships in October but was defeated by then-No. 40 Ben Lott of Drake University.
He’s still working to improve his doubles play, with a record of 3-4 this year after going 5-1 last year. It’s still an improvement over his sophomore year when he went 4-9 in doubles.
 “My volleys weren’t the best, which [are] a crucial part of doubles,” Weber said. “They improved a lot over the four years. They taught me a lot about how to move in doubles, what tactics to use. They definitely taught me a lot in doubles, made my life a lot easier.” 
Weber is one of two senior players on the roster, and sophomore Matic Spec said Weber has established himself as a leader on the team.
“I feel like he’s getting more and more confident, playing very good tennis this year,” Spec said. “He leads by example.”
Weber said he doesn’t plan to go anywhere to play professionally upon graduation. Instead, he’ll try to find a new role with the team.
“I’m staying here one more semester next year,” Weber said. “This fall I’m going to try to be an assistant coach for the team.”