KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - After having last week off, the Lipscomb men’s tennis team travels to Knoxville Saturday to continue the season.
Lipscomb (2-4) pulled out a 5-2 win over Belmont last time out and hopes to continue that momentum against the Volunteers.
With six matches under their belts, head coach Mario Hernandez was able to use the week off to evaluate where his team is as they get into the heart of their schedule.
“They (off weeks) are beneficial in order to slow down, assess where the team is at in terms of their level, and then plan what you're going to do next,” Hernandez said.
Not having a match to prepare for last week, the Bisons were able to hold more intense practices in preparation for this weekend’s contest.
“With the week off we were able to have a more physical work of practice because we didn't have to worry about being fresh for a match,” Hernandez said. “We were able to put in some good hard work.”
Tennessee (7-3) will also be coming in fresh, as they haven’t played sincel a 4-0 loss to Duke on February 12. While there is no history between the two teams in spring play, they are familiar with each other, often playing at fall tournaments.
“We know they're going to be tough but we've faced this level of competition,” Hernandez said. “Our guys just need to focus on their game, their plan for the week and stick to executing that. We need to stay focused on ourselves.”
This will be Lipscomb’s third match against an SEC opponent after opening with a 4-0 defeat to Vanderbilt and a 4-1 loss to Kentucky two weeks ago. Those experiences will help the Bisons be ready for the level of play Tennessee will present.
“It's just about knowing what to expect,” Hernandez said. “And you expect to have to work a little harder and be a bit more disciplined in executing your game in order to succeed.”
Lipscomb will serve as Tennessee’s second opponent of the day with play in Knoxville set to begin at 1:30.