I need to start this off with an apology to our fearless leader, Brewtown Andy, my fellow bloggers and our amazing readers, who are the reason this site is what it is. I am a struggling freshman trying how to figure out how to pass Intro to Psychology (this shit is hard as hell) and Stats. I’ve been trying to focus on my studies and with that, I fell away from the blog game. Guess what folks, ya boy is back and ready to blog the hell out of the Marquette tennis programs because they are on an absolute tear right now.
Because I am a chivalrous young gentleman, I am going to start off with the Women’s team first. This is a team that is 10-7 and winners of six straight. They are being led by star freshman Natilija Popovic who stands at 12-6 on the year. The injury bug hit the team pretty hard this season as Fleur Eggink and Lesley Foe were both out in the beginning of the year, but both have come back strong. Once the two came back, stud transfer Milica Novakovic was sidelined with a stress fracture, and will sit out the rest of the year.
Once Eggink came back, the team started rolling. One thing I have noticed while watching Eggink play is that she crushes the hell out of the ball. I honestly feel bad for the ball when she hits because that’s how hard she strikes the ball. A week ago Sunday, the team took on Xavier at home and the dual meet came down to the final match featuring Eggink. With ice in her veins, she won the first set 6-3 before dropping the second set 4-6. She then took the third and final set 7-5 and clinched the meet for the Golden Eagles. She look so composed during the match with the entire Helfaer Tennis Center, along with her teammates and opponents watching her every move, it made me think maybe she loves the pressure. Whatever it was, it worked and she was able to clinch for the Golden Eagles. It was awesome to watch, the crowd was rocking and atmosphere was super intense, I loved every second of it. Eggink ended up winning Big East Women’s Tennis Athlete of the Week due to her heroics against Xavier.
On Friday, the team took on Seton Hall in New York’s annoying little brother (hello, New Jersey). The Golden Eagles won 4-1 with the lone senior, Paula Tormos Sanchez, Natalija Popovic and Lesley Foe all winning their matches. The duos of Natalija Popovic and Fleur Eggink along with Andrea Amortegui and Paula Tormos Sanchez clinching the doubles point for the Golden Eagles. The team wrapped up their road trip against St. John’s on Sunday, but more on that one next time.
Now to the men’s team. The men’s team is also on an absolute tear winning their last four. The team went 11-0 at home this season, while going a not so great 2-5 on the road. The team is led by junior transfer Greg Anderson who stands at 17-9 on the season. Also doing really well for the Golden Eagles is Luke Smrek and Brett Meyers. On Friday, the team honored the lone senior Scott Christian before shutting Butler out 7-0. Freshman star Luis Heridia Gomez was named Big East Player of the Week last week after posting a 4-0 record all against Big East opponents. The team ends the regular season next Saturday against DePaul in Chicago.
Both programs are young, which means the next couple years should be fun in Milwaukee for tennis fans, or just fans of Marquette athletics. I kind of like the direction of Marquette’s programs because they all seem to be young and developing.
Both teams will be in South Carolina for the Big East Tournament in about a week and a half. I’m not really sure how the qualifying works, but I’ll figure it out by then. I’m sorry for the lack of coverage again, expect a Big East Tourney preview and maybe, if the conference tourney breaks MU’s way, an NCAA Tournament preview. I don’t know how the qualifying works for the NCAA Tournament works either, so hopefully we get some qualifiers from both programs so I can figure it out!