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SMC Tennis: Saint Mary’s prepares to recover against Alma

Isaac Lorton | Friday, March 30, 2012

Coming off a tough conference loss against Albion, Saint Mary’s will look to bounce back against another conference front-runner when they take on Alma this afternoon.

Tuesday’s score may have been 8-1 in favor of Albion (6-2, 2-0 MIAA), but Belles coach Dale Campbell feels the team is not far from the top.

“Even though the score was 8-1, I did not feel we got blown out like the score shows,” Campbell said. “We did really well at the number-two spot in doubles and won that match. Both the one and three teams had close matches, but didn’t come through. In individuals, we are getting there.”

The Belles (7-5, 1-1) hope to use their home-court advantage against the Scots (8-2, 2-0) on Friday.

“Playing at home is always good for us,” Campbell said. “I think traveling definitely can affect our play, and will affect our opponents.”

Although still early on in conference play, in order to keep hope alive for a conference championship, the Belles need to capture the next two victories against Alma and Trine.

“We really do need to win the next two games, for sure,” Campbell said. “We realize Albion was the defending champion, and we realize it was a tough loss, but the next two games will dictate our conference season.”

The Belles had swapped players between the top two doubles teams in their match against Albion, but are switching back to the lineup they had previously.

“We are going to try and switch back and play with the lineup a bit in the next coming match-ups,” Campbell said. “We are going to experiment a bit, and see how it goes.”

Sophomore Mary Catherine Faller and freshman Audrey Kiefer will be back again in the top doubles spot and freshmen Shannon Elliot and Kayle Sexton will team up again at the No. 2 spot.

“I think switching things up comes with the game,” Campbell said. “I think since they have spent so much time practicing together, there will be good communication and all of these switches will go over smoothly. Right now, this is the best option. This will give us an even spread in the doubles matches.”

As for singles play, there will be no changes made for the game against Alma.

Contact Isaac Lorton at ilorton@nd.edu