NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Lipscomb men’s tennis coach Mario Hernandez has put together a challenging schedule for 2014-15.
This fall all matches are on the road. The Bisons travel to Murfreesboro September 19-21 for the MTSU Fall Tournament. October 16-19 they make the short trip to Vanderbilt for ITA Regional Championships. The Bisons return to Vanderbilt Nov. 7-8 for the Commodores’ Fall Tournament.
The spring 2015 schedule begins with five straight matches on the road - Vanderbilt (Jan. 16), Wright State (Jan, 23), Xavier (Jan. 24), Dayton (Jan. 25) and Abilene Christian at Murray State.
The Bisons return home for indoor matches at Richland Country Club Jan. 30 against Belmont and Jan. 31 facing Tennessee Tech.
They travel to Clarksville to face Austin Peay Feb. 7. After hosting Morehead State Feb. 20 they play three more matches on the road starting Feb. 21-22 in Birmingham, Alabama against Samford and Kentucky. On Feb. 28 they play at SIU-Carbondale.
All home matches through Morehead State will be played at Richland Country Club.
The Bisons will play their first match at the Huston-Marsh-Griffith Tennis Center on campus when Ball State visits March 7. They close out the non-conference portion of the schedule with road matches at UAB on March 13 and at MTSU March 14. The final non-conference match is March 18 at home against North Alabama.
The first Atlantic Sun match is at home March 19 against North Florida.
The Bisons head to Florida to face FGCU March 26 and Stetson March 28. They return home April 2 to face USC Upstate and then hit the road April 4 to face Kennesaw State. The final A-Sun regular season match is at home April 11 against Northern Kentucky.
"Our schedule will be pretty tough with teams like Vanderbilt and Kentucky that were in the top 20 as well as many other schools that were ranked in the top 75 nationally,” Hernandez said. “We don't really have any matches that are stat packing wins to simply improve your record. We don't want that because our goal is to win the conference and the top teams in our conference don't do that.
“To improve, you need to play against tough competition. Our expectation is that rather than fear our schedule, our guys will be excited to take on some of the best teams in the country and to be tested every time they step on the court. We want tough competitors and competitors want to play the tougher competition. No great teams ever played it safe and we want to be great."