Our spring season officially starts tomorrow, Friday, January 23! As a team, we have been extremely anxious for this moment to finally be here because we have a lot to be excited about. We lost Garrett Brasseaux and Hernus Pieters last year, so we will have new faces in the singles and doubles lineup for our fans to see. Our new freshmen are Wayne Montgomery, Paul Oosterban, and Peter Bertran. I’m personally excited about these three guys because they are all really good and super talented. All three of them will contribute right away. Wayne and Peter are both extremely fast players that run down every ball and are also great ball strikers. Paul is a bigger guy who relies on his big serve and aggressive game play to win points. There is definitely a contrast of styles between our freshmen, but they are all really exciting to watch.
The rest of the returning players on the team are prepared and ready to go. Ben Wagland and Eric Diaz trained pretty hard together during Christmas Break, and their hard work is showing in both of their games. Eric put in a ton of time working on his serves and volleys for doubles, and I believe he is one of our better doubles players this year because of his commitment over the break. Ben is one of the guys I’m most excited about to watch perform this spring because I believe he is playing at a level similar to his freshman year when he played No. 1 was ranked in the top-20. Ben’s game is on the rise because he is getting his confidence back. When Ben plays confident tennis, he is by far my favorite player on the team to watch. He has a big lefty serve that he gets tons of free points with, a big forehand, good volleys, a SICK backhand slice, and he has the ability to step up and hit his backhand if he sees an opening and serve and volley. He is an all-around player and can win points many different ways if he has confidence. Nick prepared over the break by training with his dad, who played tennis for Arkansas. Lastly, Austin Smith and I prepared by spending our winter break in California at a college camp with a few other top ranked college guys and the national coach, Stephen Amritraj.
Overall, everyone is prepared, locked in, and ready to go for the season! I’ll be updating all of our followers once or twice a week. My goal with this blog is to basically give our followers an insider perspective of UGA Tennis. I’m hoping that this blog will bring us closer to our fans and allow each and every one of you to get to know us a little better. We really appreciate your support, and you make a huge difference when you show up to our matches. We feel your presence, we hear your encouragement, and it positively affects our attitude, confidence, and play on the court. We play against Michigan State at 1 p.m. this Friday, and against either Utah or Elon hopefully on Sunday at 1 p.m. The best thing about playing tennis for UGA is the family feel that comes along with it. The players, the coaches, the tennis staff, and the fans are all connected on a personal level to some degree. Please come out to support this weekend and be a part of the family!
Pasha and the Bulldogs take on Michigan State in the ITA Kickoff Friday at 1 p.m.