Wednesday, April 16, 2014
- by B.B. Branton
UTC men's tennis coach Carlos Garcia knows that most people are overlooking the Mocs to make much noise at this week's Southern Conference Men's and Women's Tennis Championship at the Champions Club in Rivermont.
Yet the 13-year Mocs head coach believes his players are ready to give a good account of themselves starting with the Davidson match today at 11 a.m..
"We lost to Davidson 5-2 earlier in the season, we only have one starter (No1. Pavels Grigorjevs) who has any SoCon tournament experience and we were 1-8 in the conference this week, so on paper that doesn't look good for us," Garcia said.
"Our guys could have easily packed it in after finishing 1-8 in conference, but our last four or five practices have been the best workouts we have had all season.
"We are playing at home, have the home crowd behind us and we are prepared to see if we can't change that earlier score with Davidson."
Garcia knows that winning the doubles point to start the match can be big for either team.
"We won the doubles point in our match in March and had three, 3-setters (all won by Davidson) that we hope to turn around today."
The winner will advance to the quarterfinals Thursday at 8:30 a.m. against No.1 seed Elon.
The semis are set for Friday at 10 a.m. and the finals on Saturday at 10 a.m.
"Elon is on a mission to win the conference and earned the top seed by going undefeated in league play, but if we get the chance to play them, it will be on our home court which should help us."
SoCon History: The Mocs have won 12 SoCon tournament titles, the last coming in 2000 when the tournament was held in Chattanooga.
McCallie Grad with Davidson: Sophomore Evan Watkins plays No.5 singles for the Wildcats and won both his singles and doubles matches against UTC in March.
contact B.B. Branton at email@example.com