Indoor Courts Prove Difficult for Boys Tennis; Andover Suffers Two Losses to Belmont and Taft

The Boys Varsity Tennis team faced Belmont Hill and Taft this weekend, two extremely powerful teams. Although Andover was confident and knew its strengths and limitations from playing B.B.&N last week, the team fell to both teams. Last Friday the team traveled to Belmont Hill expecting an easy victory, but Andover was surprised by the tenacity of the rival team. Powerful playing styles coupled with the hard indoor surfaces seemed to be the winning factor for Belmont Hill. Said Andrew West ’08, “Most of our kids are relatively small and don’t have powerful serves, they just don’t have the right game for powerful opponents.” Instead of relying on powerful starting serves, Andover’s strategy involves rallying from the baseline, outwitting, and outrunning its opponents. Unfortunately, this style of play did not fare well against the powerful shots of Belmont. Despite these setbacks, Andover put on a brave face. At the number one spot, Trey Meyer ’09 lost in a close first set of 6-4 against a tough Belmont Hill opponent. The second set didn’t fare as well, with Meyer losing 6-1. Playing at the second spot, Foster Jebsen ’08 scored similarly to Meyer, and barely lost the first set with an end score of 7-5. The second set proved more difficult ending in 6-2. Andrew Chan ’08 won his match with an impressive score of 6-4 and 7-6. Captain Matt Schubert ’07 won in a tough three sets. Toby Clark ’07 split his sets but did not get to finish his match. Although the scores may not prove it, Andrew West believes that if the courts had been different, Belmont Hill would not have performed so well. He said, “Outdoors I think we could have pretty easily beat Belmont Hill.” The very next day Andover had to take the bus to Taft, but without Andrew West. Instead, Jinwon Lee ’08 took his place at the sixth spot. Lee, along with the majority of the team, had to play on indoor courts, even though the outdoor courts were perfectly free and dry. Only the one and two positions got to play on the outdoor courts. This seemed unfair to the Andover team, as Taft was used to the slippery surface and the ball bouncing harder. Jebsen expressed his frustration, saying, “Playing indoors gave a large advantage to Taft as they were used to the indoor surfaces.” The whole team hopes that matches played on outdoor courts will end up with higher scores and victories. The next match will be played on Saturday on home courts against NMH.