Written by Miguel Mendez

The Colorado College women’s tennis team kicked off their spring season last weekend with matches against Division I schools University of Northern Colorado (UNC) and Colorado State University (CSU). The team posted a 0-7 record against both UNC and CSU. The Tigers showed great fight and poise against these schools and look to grow from the experience gained battling tough opponents.

Head Coach Anthony Weber, the 2015 SCAC Women’s Coach of the Year, is hoping for a strong season moving forward.

“We’re looking to improve our doubles strategy from last year and we’re trying to close out points better as a team,” said Weber.

All the Tigers performed admirably against these highly competitive DI opponents, especially sophomore Fiona Cerf when she took on senior Laia Hernandez Soler of CSU. The match went to 13 games as Cerf narrowly dropped the final game to lose the set 7-6. Cerf dropped the next set 7-5.

The Tigers’ underclassmen continued to take on upperclassmen opponents in challenging matches. Freshman Maddison Doerre performed consistently against both schools. Doerre lost both sets to junior Marissa Baca of UNC with identical scores of 6-3. Though unable to get a point for her team, she still demonstrated the skills that brought her to CC tennis.

“We had a lot of close matches that also showed us what we could improve on. Our singles game overall was pretty impressive,” said Doerre

First year Annie Zlevor took on first year Remi Immler from UNC and unfortunately lost the set 6-4. Junior Maddie Cahill also posted a 6-4 loss in her first set to freshman Lily-Ana Kreutzer of UNC.

Overall, the team put up a strong challenge to the impressive Division I schools. Now, they will move on to the rest of the season looking for their first win. These sets of matches provided the Tigers with some valuable experience that can only be gained from playing difficult opponents.

Despite the losing record this weekend, Weber saw the positives in the tough losses: “We got to play some strong opponents that played good, strong balls. We got to play indoors so we got to play some nice, clean points.”

New challenges will be a theme for the rest of the season.

“This year, more than others, we’re playing a more challenging schedule. Even our DIII schedule is going to be more taxing than in my four years here,” said Weber.

As a new member of the team, Doerre is optimistic: “I’m excited to see how everything goes this year, especially since [the Tigers] were regionally ranked last year. I think we have a really good chance to raise the ranking this year.”

Moving forward, the team is readying themselves for their future challengers.

“We’d like to be more mentally prepared. Our players would beat up on players in high school and then they come here and everybody is good so you have to be ready to play in every match,” said Weber.

Doerre said, “I would like to improve our doubles strategy where we can make smarter shots and staying with the point. We need to set up points rather than going for winners from the start,” said Doerre.

Despite the rough start, the women’s tennis team is on the same page and has the same goals in mind as their new spring season begins. Next, the Tigers go up against Colorado Christian University on Feb. 26, and Lakewood and Metro State University on Feb. 28 at Lifetime Fitness in Colorado Springs.

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