UTC Tennis Team Begins 2020 Spring Season Saturday
Thursday, January 16, 2020
The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga men’s tennis team opens the 2020 spring schedule with three matches this weekend. The Mocs hit the road for the first dual at Alabama on Saturday, Jan. 18. UTC follows that with a home doubleheader against Appalachian State and Union College (Ky.) on Sunday, Jan. 19.
“This is a strong and challenging weekend for the Mocs as we begin 2020 play,” stated Merzbacher. “Alabama has votes for top 25, and they are very good at home. I’m excited to see how our doubles will impact these matches, and how we line up against each time in the singles.”
UTC is coming off one if its better seasons in the last 10 years that included a 14-11 overall record and a third place showing in the Southern Conference at 4-3. Merzbacher was named the SoCon Coach of the Year, while Kerim Hyatt was the league’s Freshman of the Year.
The Mocs return five of six starters, including No.
1 senior Niklas Gerdes. Senior-transfer Turner Voges looks to battle his way into the spring lineup after advancing to the Round of 32 at the ITAs in the fall.
“We have a solid line-up top to bottom in doubles and singles, and we have had a good two weeks to prepare,” added Merzbacher. “The App. State match has two evenly matched teams going head to head, and it will be a great dual to open at home on Sunday.
“Our final match on Sunday against Union College will allow us to get more people involved and some much needed playing time.”
First serve at Alabama is set for 7:00 p.m. (E.S.T.). A link for live scoring is on the men’s tennis schedule page on GoMocs.com. This is the third year in a row the Mocs travel to Alabama, including last year’s 7-0 loss on Jan. 19, 2019. UTC is 0-4 all-time against the Crimson Tide, having previously faced them in 1982 and 2003.
Chattanooga welcomes former SoCon foe Appalachian State on Sunday at 3:00 p.m. at McCallie’s Strang-Voges Tennis Center. This is the first time the Mocs and Mountaineers have faced off since ASU left the league in 2014.
Chattanooga is 21-14 in the all-time series that dates back to 1973. ASU has won six of the last seven and 11 of 14 since 2003.
Union College, a NAIA-member program from Barbourville, Ky., takes on the Mocs at 7:00 p.m. at McCallie. These two programs met twice way back in 1934, with UTC earning both wins 4-3.
Live scoring links for both of Sunday’s matches are available on the men’s tennis schedule page on GoMocs.com.