By Celeste Wilcox
The Cougars have a tough dual match ahead of them this weekend, facing off against Boise State Friday and South Carolina Saturday March 21 and 22.
For the first time this season, fans don”t have to leave the living room to see the BYU women”s tennis team in action.
No. 1 singles and doubles action against Boise State today will be broadcast on BYU TV live at noon, and rebroadcast at midnight.
BYU is 4-8 on the season, and is on a 0-5 losing streak. Head coach Craig Manning said he thinks things will turn around this weekend.
“If we play well against both these teams, we can beat both of them,” Manning said.
The No. 64 Boise State Broncos are coming off big wins against Weber State and Montana, and they boast a nationally ranked player.
Senior Renate Stoop is No. 66 in the nation in singles rankings and has a 21-7 personal record this season.
Manning said defeating both teams this weekend will require a full effort from the Cougars.
“Boise State is tough; South Carolina is tough,” he said. “They”re both good teams; they”re both ranked.”
The No. 24 South Carolina Gamecocks are 9-4 on the season and they also bring nationally ranked players to the court.
The doubles pair of Kathy Boyanovich and Magda Wojdylo is ranked No. 30 in the nation.
To try to strengthen BYU”s team, Manning added senior Tara Porter back into the lineup. Porter hadn”t played any matches this semester because of time conflicts.
Another change to the lineup will have senior Leeza Klempner playing at the No. 1 singles position, switching places with fellow senior Dominique Reynolds, who will fill in at No. 2.
Manning said this change is necessary to give Reynolds a break.
“Nikkie [Reynolds] has been playing well,” he said. “She”s been playing great, I”m just worried about her starting to get a little bit down. I think she needs a break up of playing number one all the time. I”m worried about her confidence level.”
The change will take place for today”s match, and Manning said depending on how it goes, the lineup could change again Saturday.
“I think probably what we”ll do is rotate them around a little bit,” Manning said. “We”ll see how it goes.”
Manning said he is going into these matches with optimism, and he is telling his team to do so as well.
“If we play well, if we fight hard, we have a really good chance,” he said.
Both matches are at noon, and will be outdoors if weather permits. In the case of inclement weather, the matches will be played in the SFH indoor courts.