Momentum key for Baylor tennis

By Phillip Ericksen

“We won.”

That’s all Baylor men’s tennis head coach Matt Knoll cared about last weekend in a dominant victory over Purdue.

The 18th-ranked Bears will play a doubleheader against Texas Pan-American at 11 a.m. and UT-Arlington at 3 p.m. this Saturday at the Hurd Tennis Center. The team (3-1) is looking to carry over its momentum from last weekend and a good week of practice.

Knoll said the team doesn’t practice any differently for doubleheaders, but concentrates on fundamentals and energy.

“We’re trying to push the physicality of our training these two weeks,” Knoll said. “We feel like we weren’t physically tough enough when we played up in Tulsa.”

The Bears’ loss against Tulsa on Feb. 3 is their only loss of the season.

“One good thing about losing is it’s hard to overlook anybody,” Knoll said. “It keeps you grounded, and that’s one of the reasons you play a tough schedule.”

“Our confidence is high, and I think we’re going to play a lot better down the road,” he added.

The team will play highly ranked teams such as UCLA, Virginia and Ole Miss over a four-day stretch in March, but the team isn’t overlooking the upcoming doubleheader.

“It’s a good opportunity to get matches in, especially for a couple of guys who haven’t played that much,” said sophomore Marko Krickovic, who is ranked 50th in the nation.

Senior Roberto Maytin returned to the team last week from a Visa-related trip to Venezuela, and freshman Julian Lenz returned from a knee injury. Both play pivotal roles on the team in singles and doubles.

“I’m just trying to stay back and find my rhythm,” Lenz said. “The whole team did a great job.”

Lenz is ranked 53rd in the nation in singles.