The University of the Cumberlands (UC) Men and Women's tennis teams worked hard this past week as they had to prepare for two matches, one against the University of Pikeville and one against St. Catharine College.
On Friday March 29th, the Patriots welcomed the Patriots of St. Catharine College in for a match. They were expecting an exciting day of action but due to the extreme circumstances and a lot of injuries, St. Catharine was only able to bring 1 men's doubles team and 1 women's doubles team. UC Head Coach Chin Tan not wanting to be disrespectful decided to have his team play anyways. Coach Tan commented to St. Catharine's head coach, "Your players and your team will be in our prayers. We hope everyone is able to beat their injuries."
The rain was also an issue in this match as play was scheduled to begin at 1:00 pm but rain moved in quickly. Patriot women Mikaela Prichard (London, KY) and Kaylyn Daughtery (Clinton, TN) were the Patriot ladies to take to the court and were able to slip and slide through the rain and walk away with a win by a score of 8-3. They also had their team on their side cheering them on throughout each rally which helped pull them through. Next up was Franco Holguin (Gamez Palacio, Durango) and Geovanny Satama (Ibarra, Ecuador) for the men's doubles match. The guys played hard throughout the entire match but were unable to come away with the win falling to St. Catharine by a final score of 7-9.
On Saturday March 30th, the University of Pikeville Bears traveled to Williamsburg to begin this men's only match. The Patriots would claw tooth and nail against the Bears, but would come up just short falling by a score of 4-5. Juan Villamizar (Valencia, Venezuela) and Eric Mikhlin (Edgewater, NJ) pulled out the first and only doubles victory of the day for UC winning their match by a score of 8-5. These are two very talented Patriots who look to be important assets to the team in years to come.
Villamizar was also able to defeat his opponent in his singles match with scores of 6-2, 7-6 (4). Another Patriot who was able to win during his singles match was Ariez Heshaam (Kuching, Malaysia) who won a marathon match by scores of 3-6, 6-3, 10-8. Danilo Garcia (Quito, Ecuador) also won a big singles match defeating his opponent in three sets by a score of 6-1, 6-7, (5) 10-7 as neither participant would let up as they pushed for the victory.
The Patriots will be back in action on April 5th as they travel to Columbia, KY to take on the Lindsey Wilson Blue Raiders. Matches are set to begin at 2:00 pm.
For more information on the Patriot tennis programs along with other Patriot athletics, please visit www.cumberlandspatriots.com.
Article by Alyssa Burke, UC Multimedia & Athletic Services Graduate Assistant