Moosbacher and Bison Tennis prepare for GAC Title

By Courtlin Haygarth, Assistant Sports Editor

The Oklahoma Baptist Lady Bison claimed the No. 3 side in the upcoming GAC Championship after a week that saw OBU split conference matches, including a non-conference match against Midwestern St.

The week started with their home finale against GAC opponent Henderson St Monday, April 15.

Kim Moosbacher started the week the way she came into the week: dominating.

Moosbacher reached fifth in the nation in Division II singles rankings.

Moosbacher ran through her Henderson St. opponent at No. 1 6-0, 6-0.

Moosbacher is playing at an unprecedented level as she only dropped eight games total in all three matches this week, earning her the GAC Player of the Week.

Since the April 2 match against Cameron University, which was Moosbacher’s last loss, Moosbacher has surrendered 19 games through seven matches, with her opponents averaging just under three games a match against her.

To put that in perspective, in two match wins, Moosbacher picks up 24 games.

The rest of the team against Henderson St. followed in Moosbacher fashion as OBU won 6-1.

Every Lady Bison who did win won in straight sets. OBU captured all the doubles matches as well.

Doubles did not go as planned the next day against Midwestern St. The Lady Bison fell 6-1 in each doubles match.

Singles for the ladies showed Kim Moosbacher, Ethne Dowling, and Alex Bowers getting straight-set wins.

Madeleine Boepple nearly stole the win from MSU as she was just edged out in her second set 7-5 in the tie-breaker.

The Oklahoma Baptist Lady Bison went to face GAC opponent Arkansas Tech for their season finale.

The Lady Bison saw another heartbreaking loss as they fell 4-3 for the second straight game.

Kim Moosbacher and Ethne Dowling got a doubles win for OBU at No. 1 6-3.

The duo of Moosbacher/Dowling went 8-8 on the season.

Despite falling in their respective match against ATU, seniors Alex Bowers and Madeleine Boepple went 7-7 as partners.

In similar fashion to the Midwestern St. match, Moosbacher and Bowers, with the addition of Tahlia Walsh this time around, did their part to get OBU the win as they won their matches, but three wins was all OBU could muster.

Both Bowers and Walsh saw double-digit third set scores as both Lady Bison won in the last frame 10-8 and 12-10, respectively.

Oklahoma Baptist finished its season winning five of their final seven matches for a 4-2 conference record and an 8-13 overall record.

The GAC Championship in Bentonville, Arkansas against is up next with Oklahoma Baptist facing Henderson St., who OBU just defeated 6-1, Thursday, April 25.

If Oklahoma Baptist is able to get past Henderson St., the Bison will take on the No. 2 seed Bisons of Harding Friday, April 26 at 2:00 p.m.

Oklahoma Baptist defeated Harding earlier this month in a close contest 4-3.

Tennis earns wins against UAFS and A&M Texarkana

By Courtlin Haygarth, Assistant Sports Editor

National and conference recognitions pile up for the Oklahoma Baptist Lady Bison in a strong week of tennis.

GAC competition has been friendly towards OBU.

After losing seven in a row, OBU has rattled off four consecutive wins as of Sunday, April 14.

This included three conference match victories in a row.

With the potential to make it four in a row, they face GAC-foe Henderson St. Monday, April 15 right here on Bison Hill.

Through the course of their winning streak, the Lady Bison have posted two shutouts while squeaking out their other two matches 4-3.

Alex Bowers went 4-0 in singles over the week, earning her GAC Player of the Week honors.

Bowers is now 11-7 on the season.

Lady Bison Kim Moosbacher is gaining national recognition.

With her 15-2 singles record at No. 1, Moosbacher was ranked No. 9 in the ITA Division II Women’s National Singles Rankings.

Only four of her 15 wins have gone three sets.

Moosbacher has been dominating on the court and she will hope to continue her efforts for the big dance in a week.

The Oklahoma Baptist Women are now 7-11 on the season.

Three of those seven wins are against GAC opponents as OBU holds a 3-1 conference record.

With the Arkansas Tech match initially meant for Saturday, April 13 being postponed, that match will spell the conference finale for OBU.

OBU’s final non-conference match is Tuesday, April 16 against Midwestern State-Texas.

With the GAC match against Henderson St. Monday, April 15 and then one more conference match to follow, the Lady Bison are looking to go 5-1 over GAC competition.

Play appears very similar to last year’s team that swept through conference play and won the GAC Championship.

With the GAC Championship just over a week away, the Lady Bison have their eyes set on hardware in Bentonville.

OBU Tennis looks for success with conference matches

By Courtlin Haygarth, Assistant Sports Editor

With the season in full swing, the Oklahoma Baptist Tennis team will be around Bison Hill a lot for the coming days.

OBU’s Tennis teams will see seven matches this month; four at home for the Lady Bison and five for the men.

As well as the GAC Championships to complete their season.

Spring Break, the midway season of the semester, is here and gone. April, the longest month of the school year, is upon us. Everything seems to happen in April.

With the first half of the season done, which included three Division I opponents in Air Force, Abilene Christian and Southern Methodist, the Bison Men are 5-5 and the Lady Bison are 3-10.

As a mid-season review, we sat down with Coach Proctor to discuss his Oklahoma Baptist squad.

Coach Proctor’s takeaways from the season so far and looking ahead to conference play were the topics of discussion.

Proctor talked about the thick and the thin going through the season. He feels a different vision going into conference play.

“I think both teams are on a good track right now,” Proctor said. “Each side we have had some good matches and some bad matches… some matches that were winnable that we lost. We have also had a couple matches that we won that we very well could have lost. We played a very tough non-conference schedule.”

The mindset is to be positive and the wins will follow in the long run.

“My take is that we are in a good position and we are right where we need to be to go into conference play fresh and feeling confident,” he said.

Proctor said he believes that his boys and girls can go into every match and succeed if they have the right mindset.

“We need to focus on ourselves is what we need to do,” Proctor said. “We are good enough tennis players and a good enough team to, in my opinion, win every single match. That being said, we are also capable of losing every single match.”

The players also have to accept what position they will be in by the end of the season.

“We can peak that high or we can dip that low,” Proctor said. “I have excepted that reality and I think our players understand that reality too. What we need to do is be very, very focused on ourselves.”

If the players feel confident playing their game, Proctor can vision them being winners.

“We know our level and we know if we play [at our] level we are going to do just fine and we will be very successful in conference,” he said. “All in all, what do we need to do play well in conference? Keep doing what we are doing.”

Leading the way for each Bison squad is Kevin Andrusch and Matias Le-Fort, who are each 7-3 in singles on the season.

For the Lady Bison, Kim Moosbacher has been a huge bright spot in a rather poor season thus far for the women as she is 11-1 at No. 1 singles.

After dropping their conference opener against Southern Arkansas, Oklahoma Baptist will finish out their conference season April 13 as OBU will see four matches in eight days.

Their next action will be at home against conference opponent Ouachita Baptist Friday, April 5 at 3:00 p.m. Followed by a 10:00 a.m. match time against another GAC-foe, Henderson State, Saturday, April 6.

OBU Tennis team earns victory in Springfield

By Courtlin Haygarth, Assistant Sports Editor

The rematch was set, and the Bison and Lady Bison were on the road. 

The Lady Bison headed out to Tahlequah to take on the Northeastern State Lady Riverhawks Friday, Feb. 22 and the Bison headed South to Dallas, Texas for an exhibition match against Division I Southern Methodist.

Last year the Lady Bison met the Lady Riverhawks in the Finals of the NCAA Championships Central Region. 

OBU was unable to pick up a single doubles match, giving NSU the early 1-0 lead heading into singles.

Kim Moosbacher got her revenge against Lady Riverhawk Tatjana Stoll from the doubles match with a three set 6-4, 4-6, 7-5 win at No. 1.

Tahlia Walsh and Madeleine Boepple both got singles victories. 

With needing just one more victory to seal the match, Alex Bowers tried to give OBU the win after dropping her first set 6-0 as she pushed the match to a third set before falling 7-5.

Due to time constraints, the matches at Nos. five and six were changed to an eight game pro set, of which the Lady Bison lost both. NSU got the slight edge 4-3. 

After the Bison Men returned from Dallas, Oklahoma Baptist made their way to Sooner country in Norman, Okla. against the Kansas Wesleyan Coyotes.

Due to weather concerns, this match was relocated from Bison Hill.

This was the first time these two teams had met. 

For the men, this was the Coyotes’ first match of 2019.

They came in 1-2 with their last loss coming against Washburn 6-1. OBU lost to Washburn 6-1.

On the women’s side of things, the Lady Coyotes are 0-2, having only logged one point in those two matches.

This, too, was their first match of 2019. Both men’s and women’s squads got the win over the Kansas Wesleyan Coyotes 5-2 and 7-0, respectively. 

Both Bison teams won doubles, including a narrow 7-6 doubles victory from Andres Graterol and Matias Le-Fort to give the men the nod.

The women won each of their doubles matches 6-1 as KWU had to forfeit the third doubles match. Both squads were dominant in singles.

The men’s singles victories all came in straight sets and with the exception of Gianlucca Galdi’s 7-5 second set win, every set was 6-2 or better on the side of the Bison.

The ladies showed utter domination as they only gave up two games in all of the four singles matches with Alex Bowers and Madeleine Boepple having 6-0, 6-0 wins.  

Prior to their Feb. 26 match against University of Arkansas Fort Smith, Bison duo Andrusch/Galdi are now 4-0 as doubles partners at the No. 1 slot in regular season matches. Graterol/Le-Fort are 3-1 at No. 2. Lady Bison Moosbacher is 5-1 in No. 1 singles. Boepple is 3-0 in the No. 4 slot and has seen two 6-0, 6-0 victories. It seems Coach Proctor may have found something. Up next for the Oklahoma Baptist Men is their home opener. 

The 5-2 Texas A&M-Texarkana Eagles will come to Bison Hill March 1, followed by Western New Mexico on March 2, also at home. The next three Bison tennis matches will be in front of their home crowd.

The Bison Women have a back-to-back in San Angelo, Texas against St. Edward’s and Angelo St. March 1 and 2. Last year, the Lady Bison defeated St. Edward’s at home 8-1.  

 

OBU Tennis team earns victory in Springfield, Missouri

By Courtlin Haygarth, Assistant Sports Editor

In search for their first win, Oklahoma Baptist headed to Springfield, Mo. to take on the No. 20 Drury Panthers Feb. 15 and then the Lindenwood Lions, who were also looking for their first win, Feb. 16. 

“We are going to have to play well to beat either of those teams,” Head Coach Jason Proctor said.  “I think we have a chance in both of those matches if we play as good as we can play.”

This will be the third year in a row that Oklahoma Baptist will have traveled to Springfield to take on Drury and Lindenwood. The Bison Men have split the series each of the last two years as each of the last two years OBU has found their first win of their season on this road trip. 

On Friday, things started out promising as they took the doubles point with wins at No. 1 with Gianlucca Galdi/Kevin Andrusch and No. 2 with Matias Le-Fort/Andres Graterol, both matches ending in a 7-6 score in favor of the Bison. With needing only three victories in singles to take the match, the Bison only got one from freshman Rhett Rollins 6-7, 6-4, 10-5 as the Bison fell 5-2. This was Rollins’ first singles win of the season. 

For the women, this was the first time in three years the Lady Bison headed to Springfield for their back-to-back against the Drury Lady Panthers and Lindenwood Lady Lions winless. The last two years OBU has made the trip with a win already under their belt. 

For the Lady Bison, doubles came and went pretty fast as both Drury’s No. 1 and No. 2 girl’s duos won 6-1 and 6-2. The up-hill climb facing OBU of needing to win four of the six singles matches was nearly completed as Tahlia Walsh, Ethne Dowling, and Stefy Varon all found the winning column.

Kim Moosbacher and Alex Bowers, after taking their respective first sets, could not close the deal as they both ended up losing in three and the overall match 4-3. 

In the Lindenwood match, Sweet Victory may not have been played at halftime of the Super Bowl, but the spirit lived on in Springfield on Saturday afternoon as both Bison teams logged their first wins of the season.

After capturing the doubles point, the Bison Men got all four of their singles victories in straight sets. Rhett Rollins left his first trip to Springfield as a Bison undefeated in singles. 

The Lady Bison continued their dominant streak over Lindenwood with a third straight sweep of the Lady Lions 7-0. Madeleine Boepple, who had been the Lady Bison’s No. 2, was put at No. 4 for this match after going 0-3 in singles to begin the season. Coach Proctor spoke on the issue of his teams’ winning formula and this position shift decision. 

“Proud of the way our players played today,” Proctor said. We have full confidence in what we are doing as a team and how we are going about it. We have lost a couple matches so far this year against very strong – but also beatable – teams. I’m proud of these wins because we didn’t change anything, we didn’t panic, and we continued to go about our business with the knowledge that, at the end of the day, our diligence will yield favorable results.” 

Proctor is willing to do anything to lead the team to victory and will take advantage of the players he has. 

No strategy there. Just putting together the best possible lineup we can on each day to give OBU Tennis a chance to win. This situation is very fluid right now as we have a lot of girls who are evenly matched with one another. It all comes down to who is playing the best tennis at the moment.” 

Whatever message Proctor was or was not sendingBoepple heard it loud and clear as she played her best tennis of the short season on Saturday as she was a terror to her opponent, winning 6-0, 6-0 with each Lady Bison winning in straight sets. 

Oklahoma Baptist Tennis will make their first appearance on Bison Hill of the season on Saturday, Feb. 23 when Kansas Wesleyan comes to town. Match time is at 11:00 that morning. Both Bison squads will look to make it two in a row.   

 

 

 

 

 

 

OBU tennis ranked high for spring

The Oklahoma Baptist Bison enter 2019 with a pre-season Great American Conference ranking of 5th, preceded by Southern Arkansas, Ouachita Baptist, Harding, and Southeastern Oklahoma St. with the top spot. 

After a 1-2 GAC record in last year’s conference play, OBU will have a lot of people to prove wrong as their lone conference win last year came against Ouachita Baptist. Harding, this year’s pre-season #2 ranked GAC team, bettered OBU twice last year, including in the end-of-year GAC Tournament. 

OBU had quite the turnover from last year to this year as they lost Daniel Aguilera, Babji Atturu, and Luis Romero to graduation, as well as OBU’s No. 1 from last year, Lucas Castelo Branco, who transferred to Division I Oklahoma. Returning for the Bison are juniors Kevin Andrusch, Gianlucca Galdi, and Matias Le Fort. Freshmen Harrison Boggs, Ashish Komaragiri, and Rhett Rollins, as well as JUCO transfer Andres Graterol round out the new faces for the OBU Men. 

Gianlucca Galdi saw the most success in October’s GAC Individual Championships as he made it to the finals in Flight 1. Flight 1 for doubles showed Andres Graterol and Kevin Andrusch make it to the consolation finals.  

The year’s conference play will not begin until March 30th when Oklahoma Baptist takes to Magnolia, Arkansas to face Southern Arkansas. OBU will start and finish conference play within a month as their last conference match will come against Harding on April 12th 

In the men’s exhibition match against Abilene Christian, two of the three doubles matches went the Bison’s way. However, saturday morning showed a lone win from freshmen Rhett Rollins with junior Gianlucca Galdi 7-6. Before that, OBU dropped their doubles matches at No. 1 and 3, giving Metro. St. the doubles nod before Rollins and Galdi could even secure the win with the previous matches ending first.  

With the Roadrunners of Metro. St. up 1-0, OBU needed four singles matches to take the overall match. The Bison earned zero singles wins in their exhibition match. Starting out, OBU went 1-1 with a loss from Matias Le Fort and a win from Andres Graterol. Following suit to Graterol was Kevin Andrusch at No. 1 with a three-set win after dropping the first. 

With the match tied up 2-2, OBU needed two more matches to take the match. Galdi fell just short as he dropped his third set 2-6 after it being tied 1-1. After a Rhett Rollins loss, the match rested on Nick Parker’s shoulders. Nick, a senior, is playing his first year of collegiate tennis ever after freshman Harrison Boggs proved ineligible to play this year. Parker dropped his first set 1-6 before storming back in the 2nd only to fall 5-7.  

Oklahoma Baptist will return to Shawnee before taking a short trip to Oklahoma City on February 9th where they will take on the Washburn Ichabods at neutral site Oklahoma City Tennis Center. Last year in the same location, the Bison fell to the Ichabods 4-5.  

The Lady Bison as the defending GAC champions are three days out from their first match of the Spring 2019 season. They will go into that match with pre-season rank #1 in the GAC next to their name. OBU led the way in the pre-season poll followed by Henderson, Arkansas Tech, Southern Arkansas, Southeastern Oklahoma St. Henderson St., and Ouachita Baptist rounding it off. 

Last year the Lady Bison went 6-0 in conference play, including Harding, this year’s pre-season rank #2 in the GAC, twice. One of those victories over Harding was on the way to claiming the GAC tournament title after defeated Southeastern Oklahoma St. in the final.  

Returning from last year’s championship team are seniors Madeleine Boepple and Alex Bowers, along with juniors Kim Moosbacher, Tahlia Walsh, and Jacqueline Charvat. OBU graduated Kateryna Shkot, Caroline Abbe, and Megan Bowlin. Filling the void left by Shkot, Abbe, and Bowlin will be freshmen Ethne Dowling and Landrey Johnson, as well as JUCO transfer Stefy Varon from Hinds Community College. 

The GAC Individual Championships earlier in October showed Lady Bison Alex Bowers win herself a Flight 3 championship alongside Madeleine Boepple and Kim Moosbacher who claimed the doubles title in their respective Flight. 

The Oklahoma Baptist Lady Bison’s trip to Colorado ended with a season-opening loss to Metropolitan St. – Denver 5-2. This loss came one day after OBU lost an exhibition match to Division I Air Force 7-0. 

Lady Bison duo Madeleine Boepple/Kim Moosbacher got the lone doubles victory for OBU at 6-4. Moosbacher also attributed to OBU’s point total with a singles win at No. 1 along with Alex Bowers at No. 3. Tahlia Walsh at No. 4 recovered from her 6-0 1st set loss with a 6-1 2nd set win before dropping the 3rd 6-1. 

The 0-1 Oklahoma Baptist Lady Bison return to Bison Hill before making the short trip to Oklahoma City on February 9th to take on the Washburn Lady Ichabods at neutral site Oklahoma City Tennis Center. The Lady Bison were winners over the Lady Ichabods 6-3 when they met last year at the same location. 

Oklahoma Baptist will see their first conference action Saturday, March 30th when they travel to Magnolia, Arkansas to take on Southern Arkansas before closing their season with five straight GAC matches.     

 

Men’s tennis falls to Drury; women find redemption against Lindenwood

By Courtlin Haygarth, Contributing Writer   (Courtesy photo/Bison Athletics)

It was a late night in Springfield as the Bison took on the Panthers of Drury University. After falling just short to No. 19 Washburn back February 10th, the Bison looked to upset the 13th ranked Drury Panthers. Drury was ranked 13th for a reason.

In Men’s Singles, the number one flight matchup between OBU’s Lucas Castelo Branco and Drury’s Sebastian Amato went the distance. Branco came up just short, with Amata winning the match 6-3, 2-6, 10-4.

The number two flight featuring OBU’s Kevin Andrusch vs. Nico Hadeler of Drury was seemingly all Hadeler, as he won in straight sets, 6-1, 6-2. OBU’s Daniel Aguilera vs. Augustin Diot, in the number three flight, wasn’t much different. Diot won 6-3, 6-1.

OBU’s Luis Romero showed a bit more fight in his match against Gregor Kokalj in the 4th flight as Romero lost 6-4, 7-5.

The moment it seemed like the OBU Men would get swept in singles, OBU’s Gianluca Galdi in the 5th flight gave the Bison a sign of life as he defeated Lukos Stierling 6-3, 7-6 (7-5). The number six flight had OBU’s Matias Le Fort losing to Sacha Mourier 6-3, 6-0. Overall score of the singles matches: OBU – 1 Drury – 5.

For Men’s Doubles, though, the Bison Men showed a lot of fight, it was a clean sweep for the Panthers. The number one flight which featured OBU’s Andrusch/Romero vs. Amato/Kokalj had the Panther duo narrowly edging out the victory, 9-8 (10-5). OBU’s Le Fort/Galdi vs. Hadeler/Stierling in the second flight saw similar fight out of the Bison duo, with them coming up short to the duo from Drury 9-7. To round it out for the Panthers, the number three flight between OBU’s Aguilera/Branco and Diot/Mourier had the Panthers taking it 8-5.

Overall score of the doubles matches: OBU – 0 Drury – 3. The fi nal score of the day had the Drury Panthers getting the best of the OBU Bison, 8-1.

 


 

The Lady Bison brought into a tough matchup with the Drury Lady Panthers a 1-0 record and looking to become 2-0.

The Lady Panthers were a perfect 4-0. The Lady Bison had the goal to be the Panthers’ first loss.

In Women’s Singles, the matches were split for each side.

The Lady Bison that tasted victory was Kateryna Shkot, who came back with a vengeance after losing the first set to Ruby Huang, 4-6, 6-0, 6-0.

Next, Alex Bowers over Josephine Jedrychowski, 7-6 (retired), and Madeleine Boepple winning in straight sets over Julia Schepp, 6-3, 6-1.

Overall score of the singles matches: OBU – 3 Drury – 3. For women’s doubles, Drury narrowly edged out OBU in the victory field as OBU’s number one doubles team Moosbacher/Boepple lost to Huang/Karl 8-0.

Shkot/Walsh, OBU’s number two doubles team, got the win vs. Jedrychowski/Voigt 8-6.

In the deciding match, Drury’s Schepp/Zheleva got the better of OBU’s Abbe/Bowers, winning 9-7.

Overall score of the doubles matches: OBU – 1 Drury – 2.

Coming into this matchup, the ladies of Drury had only given up 4 points in their 4 wins combined. The Lady Bison forced 4 points in this one match. The OBU women take away some bright spots from this tough loss as they finish this back-to-back tomorrow when they face the Lindenwood Lady Lions.

On Saturday Oklahoma Baptist swept Lindenwood, 9-0, to move to 2-1 and finish off its Missouri road trip.

Kim Moosbacher and Kateryna Shkot won for the first time this spring as doubles partners, 8-3, at number one doubles and Tahlia Walsh and Madeleine Boepple did the same at number two, winning 8-2.

Moosbacher, Shkot, Walsh, Alex Bowers and Boepple all recorded singles wins. The Lady Bison play at home Friday, taking on Cowley County Community College at one o’clock pm. Saturday the Lady Bison will face the Saints of Seward County Community College at 12 pm

Men’s Tennis begins season in national spotlight, seeks first NCAA championship

By Courtlin Haygarth, Contributing Writer    (Courtesy Photo/Bison Athletics)

ITA Central Regional Championships, October first, 2017. That was the last tennis action OBU Tennis saw. This Saturday, February 10th, a new season begins when the Oklahoma Baptist University Bison meet the Washburn Ichabods in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

This contest will be OBU’s first match of the early 2018 season, where this will be Washburn’s third match, splitting their first two matches after losing to Drury University and then defeating McKendree University

The Bison enter the 2018 year ranked 21st according to the latest Intercollegiate Tennis Rankings (ITA) Division II rankings. The Ichabods of Washburn come in ranked 19th.

Last year at the ITA Central Regional Championships, OBU’s David Aguilera and Lucas Branco faced Washburn’s Alejandro Valarezo Plaza and Blake Hunter, respectively, in singles, with Branco getting the best of Hunter and Plaza defeating Aguilera.

The Washburn duo ended up winning the doubles title in that tournament, defeating the Bison duo along the way. They will have a chance at each other again come February tenth in OKC.

Entering this year, the Bison of Oklahoma Baptist were voted as pre-season favorites in the Great American Conference (GAC).

In an interview with OBU Head Coach Nick Papac, in addition to winning the conference, Papac’s goal for their men’s and women’s team is for them each to reach the Sweet Sixteen at the end of year NCAA tournament.

The first step en route to that goal begins in OKC on February tenth as the Bison of Oklahoma Baptist University take on the Ichabods of Washburn University.

 

Coaches Corner: Men’s Tennis

By Courtlin Haygarth, Contributing Writer    (Courtesy Photo/Bison Athletics)

How would one feel if they entered their respective sport’s season being the pre-season favorite to win their conference and their men’s team being nationally ranked 21?

That is exactly what is facing OBU Head Coach Nick Papac and the OBU tennis team as they get ready to begin their 2018 tennis season on February 10th against Washburn University. In light of the season opener being just around the corner, we sat down with Coach Papac to ask him some questions about his first semester as OBU’s head tennis coach, expectations for his team, and more.

Question: With your semester as OBU’s head tennis coach under your belt, what are some takeaways and things you have learned?

A: First thing is what a great group of kids of here. Coming in, I wanted to cultivate a family atmosphere, come to find out the team does it themselves.  

Most of our players are international, so it helps them out to have each other and all be in the same boat. They are all in this together. And what I have learned? What haven’t I learned? I’ve grown up a lot in the past 7 months. It’s different being a head coach compared to being an assistant when it comes to the overall direction of the team. I have much greater administrative responsibility as head coach. 

Q: With a difficult schedule ahead of you, what does your team need to do this year to be competitive?

A: Staying healthy is always important. That gives us the best chance to win. Taking care of the little things. We look for quality of practice over quantity of practice. We also want to be prepared for practice and have a mindset to improve in tennis.  

Q: Who has emerged as team leaders?

A: We have great senior leadership on this team. We have 3 seniors on both our men’s and women’s side. We look for maturity and responsibility in our team and they hold the team to us as coaches’ standards. We look to our seniors.  

Q: What are your goals for each team going into this year?

A: Each year, my goal is to maximize the potential of the team. This year my goals are, for both men’s and women’s, winning the GAC, the conference tournament, and then making it to the Round of 16 in the NCAA tournament at the end of the year. 

The Bison Men, according the ITA rankings, have five matches against top 25 opponents in 2018.

The first of the five comes this Saturday when the Oklahoma Baptist University Bison take on the Washburn University Ichabods in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma at 1:00 PM for the Bison’s season opener.