Men's tennis set for "Battle of the Boulevard"
Thursday, February 9, 2017
Men's tennis set for

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - After picking up a win and some momentum last weekend, the Bison men’s tennis team will host rival Belmont on Friday.

Lipscomb (1-4) has won the last three “Battle of the Boulevard” matchups with the Bruins, but head coach Mario Hernandez knows this Belmont team bring new challenges to his team.

“We are very familiar with them,” Hernandez said. “They have two new additions to their team and they've started the year off well, so we will be ready for a good match.”

Belmont (4-2) enters the match after going 1-1 last weekend with a 5-0 win over Alabama A&M and a close 4-3 loss to Kennesaw State.

After a slow start to the season, the Bisons have built some confidence in their games in recent weeks. This is partly due to an upswing in doubles play.

The Bisons won consecutive doubles last weekend, which included Rob Mitchell and Victor Chaw defeating the 25th-ranked doubles team in the nation in Kentucky’s Beck Pennington and Enzo Wallart.

Hernandez credits his team’s preparation throughout the week for their increased level of play and hopes to carry that into singles action.

“We just have to keep putting more effort and thought into our preparation for doubles as we did the previous week,” Hernandez said. “As for singles, it's the same concept as doubles. We just have to keep preparing better as coaches and players so the performance takes care of itself.”

Hernandez and his team have continued to focus on their preparation heading into matches as they look to take that confidence they’ve gained into future matches.

“The focus this week has been to prepare as best as possible by being specific with our training so we know exactly what we want to do on court so that guys don't question themselves in competition,” Hernandez said. “We've been doing a much better job of that and the guys are showing more confidence each day.”

Despite it being a rivalry match, Hernandez wants his team to approach Friday’s 7 p.m. matchup at Richland Country Club as they would any other match.

“We've got performance goals that we need to take care of and that will be our focus,” Hernandez said. “The results will speak for themselves.”