Men sail past Shoremen; women take close win

This year’s Spring Break saw exotic destinations for both the men’s and women’s tennis teams, with the men’s team visiting Southern California and the women’s team visiting central Florida for three matches each.

On March 14, the men’s tennis team fell to Cerritos College with the Falcons taking all six singles and all three doubles matches. However, the Engineers did not give up without a fight. Senior co-captain Graham Harris and senior Anthony Kim took their doubles match to a tiebreaker, and Kim and junior Stephen Baxter took their singles matches to third sets.

The Engineers didn’t take long to rebound from the loss; two days later, the team faced off against Hardin-Simmons University in La Habra, CA, where the Engineers won 7-2. Junior McKinley Grimes won the first singles match, and he and senior Sherman Uyeno defeated the Cowboy’s Alex Hunt and Andrew Eurek.

Sophomore Tristan Wise, who won the second singles match against Hardin-Simmons, shared his sentiments about the week, “Our energy was a lot higher over the trip, we hadn’t been playing as well early on in the season, and by the end of the week I really felt like we were hitting our stride and coming together as a team.”

Finally, the men’s tennis team took home a definitive 9-0 win against Washington College, with RPI also winning the three additional exhibition matches played. The three matches brought the Engineers to a season record of 3-6.

The women’s tennis team began the break with a tight win against Franklin & Marshall College. Freshman Andrea Valencia won the fourth singles match against Emily Gruenberg to ensure the 5-4 win for the Engineers.

Junior Pooja Ganesh also won her singles match against Franklin & Marshall. “We had some very close matches that we can learn from. We fought very hard and worked hard on the practice court, and most importantly we had a great time!” Ganesh said.

Next, the Engineers faced the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, who defeated RPI with four singles wins and all three doubles wins. Sophomore Melanie Frank and freshman Maria Salmon won their second and third singles matches respectively to give the Engineers two points.

Finally, the team faced off against the Connecticut College Camels, losing 6-3. Ganesh and freshman Andrea Valencia won their respective singles matches, and freshmen Mailani Neal and Nisha Rajamohan won the second doubles match.

Senior team captain Emily Laurilliard felt positive about the week’s matches, stating “We had a wonderful week in Florida spending quality time as a team both on and off the court. We played three matches while we were there and came out winning one and losing two very close matches. Everyone played very well and fought their hardest the entire week. We feel very prepared and excited for the rest of our spring season!”

Both teams have their next set of matches scheduled for the weekend of April 2, with the men’s team facing off against Bard College and the women’s team participating in the Nor’Easter Bowl from April 1 to April 3 in Wellesley, MA.