Story by Clara Firtos, Contributing writer
The Racers finished off the season over the weekend against Jacksonville State Friday and Tennessee Tech Saturday, losing both matches 7-0.
Ending the season is bittersweet, said Will True, sophomore from Bowling Green, Kentucky.
“It felt a bit strange knowing I’m already halfway done with my collegiate career, but I’m looking forward to spending summer working hard to improve aspects of my game that need work,” he said.
In the singles matches, Marcel Ueltzhoeffer, sophomore from Oftersheim, Germany, played in the No. 1 spot.
Ueltzhoeffer played a close first set but lost the match 7-6, 6-1. Despite his loss, Ueltzhoeffer has won nine single matches out of the whole season.
At No. 2, True won his second set but was defeated by his opponent 6-0, 7-6, 12-10. Throughout the season True played in the No. 1 spot.
No. 3 Srdjan Trosic sophomore from Novi Sad, Serbia, fell 6-1, 6-3.
“Ueltzhoffer, True and Trosic will all be on the team next year,” said Anjan Kashyab, graduating junior from Tell City, Indiana, “They were all great teammates, and they showed dedication to the sport.”
In the doubles competitions, the Racers fell, giving Jacksonville State the early lead.
No. 1 partners Ueltzhoeffer and David Schrott, freshman from Mannheim, Germany, came close in the first set but fell to their opponents 7-6, 6-1. No. 2 duo, True and David Hess, junior from Louisville, Kentucky, won their second set but lost in the tiebreaker 6-0, 7-6, 12-10.
In the last match of the season, the Racers lost 7-0 to Tennessee Tech, giving the Racers a 1-8 score in the OVC and 3-22 overall.
“The one thing is that I have a young team,” said Head Coach Mel Purcell. “I’m looking forward to next year, and after a tough season, we are looking toward to improving.”
Singles No. 1 player Ueltzhoeffer fell 6-0, 6-7 and No. 2 True fell 7-6, 7-3.
“These Ueltzhoeffer and True are studs, they fought a tough team,” said Purcell, “Ueltzhoeffer was up five to four serving in his match and for his first year he played good.”
Purcell said True played well all year.
He said it’s important for True and the rest of the men to maintain a good attitude and to focus on the OVC for next season.
The doubles duo True and Hess lost 4-2.
Purcell said it’s a tough schedule for next semester and he’s focusing in on how the men play doubles.
“[Javier Villar] came in to play for Murray State and never played double tournaments before,” Purcell said. “So it’s important to improve him on doubles just like the rest of the boys.”
Purcell said the men need to focus on being more competitive in the OVC and to work hard over summer to prepare for next year.
Men’s tennis might have had a bad year, Purcell said, but he is still telling the men to focus on a positive attitude, grades and learning from mistakes.
“The more experience the better the player,” Purcell said.