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SMC Tennis: Belles team eager to take revenge Saturday

John Helms | Friday, March 19, 2010

After a successful 4-1 trip over Spring Break, the Belles will take to the court again Saturday, traveling across the state to take on Indiana Wesleyan.
Saint Mary’s (6-2) is looking to avenge last year’s loss to the Wildcats. “It can be slightly intimidating playing a team that has beat us previously, but I think everyone feels very confident that we have improved immensely since last year,” top singles player Jillian Hurley said. “I think if everyone can go into their matches with a positive attitude and a strong drive to win then who beat whom last year won’t matter.”
Belles coach Dave Campbell said his team will come out with a chip on its shoulder, using the loss from last year as motivation.
“We need to use that as motivation and expect to play our best against them,” he said.
The team will also look to build off the momentum from Spring Break. The team traveled to Orlando, Fla., and performed at a high level throughout the trip. The Belles defeated Wartburg, 8-1, St. Francis, 9-0, Ursinus, 9-0 and Carthage 5-4. Even their one loss was close, falling 5-4 to a different Wesleyan.
“I think overall the team is feeling good about our wins over Spring Break. Winning the majority of our matches definitely boosted our confidence going into our regular season,” Hurley said. “The momentum is definitely going to carry over as we head towards our match this Saturday.”
Now the team will look to take their progress a step further.
“I think we go into every match expecting to succeed, and this match is no different. However, because we did so well over Spring Break, our expectations to do well in this match are even higher,” she said.
The Belles play on the court has been helped by their bonding off the court. Thanks in large part to the Orlando trip, the girls are gelling as a team at the right time. Their play and team chemistry on the court is noticably improving as a result.
“I think as a team we are not only improving on the court, but also off of the court. Our team really bonded over Spring Break, which has affected our overall team spirit and drive to succeed,” Hurley said.
Saint Mary’s will face Indiana Wesleyan in Marion, Ind., Saturday in an 11 a.m. match.