By SHELBY WHITEHOUSE
Both the men and women’s tennis teams were picked to finish fourth in the USA South preseason poll. The teams plan to finish in the top three this season.
The Piedmont College tennis teams are gearing up for the 2014 season. They have been practicing almost all year to get ready for the upcoming season.
The tennis teams have gained new players and also a new assistant coach this year. The women gained four new players including: freshman Marissa Akin, freshman Amanda Blackwell, freshman Haley Hall, and freshman Viola Terschluse. The men’s tennis team gained two freshmen men: Matt Metzger and Robbie Werner.
Graduate student Moses Das returned to become the new graduate assistant coach for men and women’s tennis. Das is a 2012 graduate and previous tennis player from Piedmont. “I expect good things from the tennis teams this year. There are four seniors on the guys side and I expect them to step it up one last time and make things happen. I’m optimistic that both teams will have a successful year and will make Piedmont proud,” said Das about the upcoming season.
Shane Wood, head coach, is entering his eleventh season as the Head Tennis Coach for both the men’s and women’s teams at Piedmont. Wood is also a veteran and PC alumni. He has ten conference titles to his name, as well as a NCAA National Tournament appearance.
The tennis teams both have many players that will be returning. Joel Silverberg, a senior, is tied for the lead in overall single victories, 11, and lead the team in USA South singles victories. Silverberg is also a USA South Academic All-Conference selection.
Two other seniors returning for the men are Patrick Steck and Christopher Davidson. The dynamic duo recorded a 10-8 doubles record which included five USA South victories.
“We have a really strong team. Although we are not projected to finish in the top three in the conference, we recently gained two recruits that are great additions to the team. With our team work ethic and desire to be the best, our team goal is to finish top three in the conference and I feel like my team and I can get the job done,” said Davidson.
The women have some returning players as well. Katie Sailors, a senior, went 9-9 overall in singles play. Sailors is a Second Team USA South All-Conference selection. She is partnered with Ashley Fannon, another senior, and together they posted a team best 9-2 USA South doubles record last year.
Both tennis teams will kick off their season with a game in Sewanee, Tn. The teams will travel to The University of The South on Feb 21.
Matches will begin at 1 p.m.