The University of Louisville’s Men’s Tennis team ends the month of January competition with a 5-1 record. Their lone loss coming to the nations number five program Ohio State.
This past Thursday the Cards spent their day in the Bass-Rudd Tennis Center in a double-header dual with visitors Toledo and Tennessee Tech. The Cards defeated both schools 6-1, 6-1. It was their first competition since suffering their first loss of the season at OSU.
Despite the loss at Ohio State the Cardinals were given an opportunity to gauge themselves against one of the nation’s top teams.
“I think at Ohio State we learned about ourselves. They were still better than us, but the difference isn’t as big as what the rankings, us at 47 and them at five, suggest,” junior Sebastion Stiefelmeyer said.
In the 1 PM match against Toledo, the Cards dropped the first point of the day losing two out of three doubles matches. They righted the ship in singles winning outright, 6-0.
“I think they felt like this would be an easy day, but I told them that these were two very good teams in Toledo and Tennessee Tech,” Men’s Tennis Head Coach Rex Ecarma said. “Once you are in a dual match season you don’t take anyone for granted. I feel like this team took Toledo way too lightly. Sometimes you make a mistake like that and it’s a quick loss, not a 6-1 win.”
The Cardinals then played host to Tennessee Tech at 6 pm. They won two out of three in doubles to earn the first point of the match, then went 5-1 in singles play to finish off the Golden Eagles.
“In singles we are very deep especially compared to last year. The singles are performing exactly at the point where we want to be, of course, everybody still has room for improvement,” Stiefelmeyer said. “But the season is going to be long so if we continue to improve from this point it’s going to be a great season.”
Stiefelmeyer is the one seed singles player and is in the one seed doubles team, with fellow junior Albert Wagner. They were one of the two doubles teams to fall to Toledo in the first match.
“Doubles, unfortunately we are not where we want to be. Losing too many doubles points, there is too much insecurity,” Stiefelmeyer said. “So there is definitely room for improvement.”
The Cards compete next Wednesday, 2:30 pm at the Bass-Rudd Tennis Center against the North Carolina Tar Heels.
Photo by Austin Lassell/Louisville Cardinal