Tennis sweeps weekend matches to open season 3-0

GVL/Bo Anderson GVSU senior Lexi Rice volleys the ball back towards Walsh. Walsh.

Bo Anderson

GVL/Bo Anderson GVSU senior Lexi Rice volleys the ball back towards Walsh. Walsh.

Judson Rodriguez

Grand Valley State University soundly defeated Lake Erie College in women’s tennis on Sunday morning to close out a stellar weekend in which they went 3-0.
“It’s always much nicer to start out 3-0 as opposed to 0-3,” said GVSU head coach John Black.

The Lakers enjoyed a trio of 9-0 wins this weekend beating Malone College on Friday and Walsh University Saturday before closing with the 9-0 win on Sunday.

Freshman Claire Cooper battled through two tough matches and grinded out two wins at No. 1 singles and doubles.

“The No.1 doubles match was pretty back and the forth for the most part early,” Black said. “We kind of pulled away at the end.”

Cooper and new partner sophomore Morgan Patterson got their first win as duo on Sunday.

“It was our first time playing one together and we were really nervous,” Cooper said. “It just took awhile to get in a groove and start hitting through the ball more and committing to our shots.”

Similar game-play styles allowed the pair to have success at such and early stage in the season Cooper said.

“Morgan is an aggressive player but at the same time she is not too aggressive where she is missing shots,” Cooper said. ”Our games styles fit well together.”

Cooper and Patterson put away the early-season nerves to take the 8-5 win. Cooper then played the No. 1 spot in singles earning a difficult 6-0, 7-6 win.

“Claire’s a freshman and playing the No.1 position is tough for anybody she got a little bit of nerves and got a little tight but she stayed calm and was able to close out the match,” Black said.

In the second set the five foot eleven inch Cooper ran into some trouble but was able to put her away her opponent in the end.

“A lot of players try to hit the ball low on me because I’m so tall,” Cooper said. ”Once I figured it out I just had to get to the top of the ball’s rise.”

In the No. 2 singles, Niki Shipman turned in a very consistent performance to easily win her match 6-0, 6-0.

“Niki played very solid tennis today,” Black said. ”She played very clean and made her opponent move I was really happy with her performance.”

The Lakers have a much harder schedule coming up with the ITA Regional Tournament starting Sept. 21.

“Its good to play these early matches because in the beginning of the year everyone is nervous and if you can play through some of those early nerves it will help you later,” Black said.

The Lakers are back on the courts Friday at Jenison High School for the ITA Regional Tournament. Times will be posted online later in the week.

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