Player shortage faults tennis

by Beacon Staff • September 28, 2005

,"A lack of players proved to be a problem for the Emerson College women's tennis team as a full squad from Johnson & Wales University defeated the Lions five games to four at the Boston Athletic Club this past Wednesday.

Co-captain Jodie Jordan, a junior writing, literature and publishing major, said she was not pleased with the lack of commitment by some former players.

"Last year we always had a full team," Jordan said. "This year we had a turnover and a bunch of our [freshman] players quit. So then we're left with just us."

Jordan said that only four of her teammates could make the match because it was scheduled at 3:30 p.m., an inconvenient time for many of the players.

"A lot of them said it had to do with time commitments," Jordan said.

Head Coach Gary Chafetz said that three or four of his players couldn't compete in the match because they had classes from 2 to 6 p.m.

Despite having to forfeit two singles games and a doubles game, the four women who did participate said they knew they could not worry about not having a full team present.

"[I told them to] do the best you can and don't let structural problems get in the way of being positive," Chafetz said.

Senior co-captain Jenny Barr, a management communications major, faced off against Johnson & Wales University's number one singles player, Taylor Krickl. Barr defeated Krickl 6-1, 6-1.

"I came ready to play today and I didn't think about anything else," Barr said about her performance. "I didn't worry about our low numbers today, which I normally do. I could trust my shots."

Jodie Jordan, who beat Olivia Molhant 6-3, 6-1 in second singles, said she used the home court of the Boston Athletic Club to her advantage.

"[Molhant] wasn't able to adjust to the speed of the courts ... so I pretty much just hit it hard right at her," Jordan said.

After Jordan and Barr finished their singles games, they played number one doubles against Krickl and Clotilde Niangara. Jordan and Barr won 8-5 in a fast-paced game. Having Barr and Jordan combining for three wins, the Lions still had a fighting chance.

The winning continued as sophomore Erika Rydberg, a double major in communication studies and writing, literature and publishing, beat her opponent, Jessica Cohen, 6-2, 6-2 in third singles.

"[Rydberg] has beaten many players that look much better than [her]," Chafetz said.

After completing five games and with the addition of the three forfeits, the score of the match was even at 4-4. The decisive game of the match came down to second doubles with freshman writing, literature and publishing major Crysky Skevington and Rydberg versus Cohen and Molhant. Cohen and Molhant started off strong and took a three sets to zero lead. Emerson's Skevington and Rydberg responded by winning the next five sets in a row, making the game 5-3.

Skevington and Rydberg were not able to hold the lead, however, and lost the game 8-6.

Reflecting on the doubles match with Skevington, Rydberg said, "I think we played well. We never played together in a match. If we have more practice together I definitely think we can win."

Chafetz did see progress in the team's performance.

"It was a close match," Chafetz said. "It could have gone either way. Win or lose, it was a great match."

Rydberg summed up the attitude of the team saying, "we probably would have won if we had more people."

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