Elis Head to Virginia for Season-Opening Doubleheader
No. 59 Yale Scheduled to Face Davidson and Virginia Tech
NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The Yale men's tennis team will commence the second half of its 2013-14 season this upcoming weekend with a road trip to Blacksburg, Va. There, the Bulldogs are set to play two unfamiliar opponents in Davidson and No. 38 Virginia Tech. Both matches will take place at Virginia Tech's scenic Burrows-Burleson Tennis Center. The Bulldogs' spring season will officially get underway on Saturday at 10:00 a.m. when they take on Davidson. Following this encounter, the Elis will have less than 24 hours of recovery time before taking the court against Virginia Tech at 10:00 a.m. on Sunday.
This weekend's matches will mark the first time in four years that the Bulldogs have begun the regular season on the road. The upcoming matches, however, are two of just five total non-Ivy away matches this season, compared to 10 non-Ivy matches at home. This bodes well for the Elis' chances of success, as they have historically performed well on their home courts, going 10-2 in this category last year. If Yale, currently ranked No. 59 in the nation, can make a strong start in Blacksburg, it will give this year's squad a chance to challenge the impressive 18-6 overall mark set by the 2012-13 team.
The Bulldogs will face stern competition this weekend, particularly against Virginia Tech, a squad that boasts a top-40 national ranking. The Hokies' roster features three players with a national ranking in singles, including No. 26 Amerigo Contini. Contini is also one half of the No. 23 doubles team in the country, along with teammate Andreas Bjerrehus.
One player on the Yale squad to look out for in the season openers is freshman Tyler Lu. The last time Lu was on the court, he pulled double duty at the Connecticut State Championships, winning both the singles and doubles titles. Lu also claimed a singles draw victory at the Ivy Plus Invitational. He will be looking to build off these wins as he makes his debut in a regular season match. Lu is one of four members in the Class of 2017—the others being Alex Hagermoser, Photos Photiades and James Ratchford—who comprise a talented freshman class. All eyes will be on how the team's newest players can contribute to the Bulldogs' efforts this season.
Yale last faced Virginia Tech in back-to-back seasons in 2004 and 2005, falling to the Hokies both times. Nine years later, the Elis will look to reverse these results.
Live scores of both matches can be found here.
Report by Robert Batista '15, Yale Sports Publicity