Mar 312004
 
Authors: Rob Bombard

After cruising past conference rival Wyoming, the Rams tennis

team stymied Northern Colorado Tuesday, sweeping every match and

improving this season to 9-5.

The Rams are riding a five-match win streak and the timing

couldn’t be better as the team heads deeper into conference

play.

“This is a young team, but they’re really starting to come

together and play well,” said head coach Jon Messick. “Right now

it’s just all about getting these girls on the court and getting

them some experience.”

The Rams faced a hungry Wyoming team Saturday and used solid

play from freshmen Emily Kirchem and Tatyana Ugorich to lead the

Rams to an undefeated start in Mountain West play. Ugorich, who

recently returned from shoulder surgery, has won 11-of-12 matches

this season. Not far behind Ugorich is Kirchem, who has won seven

straight at the team’s No. 2 position.

“Emily and Tatyana both have been undefeated in March. They’re

just playing phenomenally,” Messick said.

Doubles play has also improved for the Rams; two of three

pairings won against Wyoming and all three pairings swept Northern

Colorado.

Against the Division II Bears, the Rams had a difficult time

finding a rhythm early on but later rolled to an easy win.

“UNC is a Division II school so the level of competition wasn’t

as fierce as we’ve been playing lately, but it was still a

hard-fought match,” Messick said.

Coming up for the Rams are two pivotal meetings this weekend

with Mountain West rivals Air Force and New Mexico.

“Our goal is to win the Mountain West title and in order to do

that we need to win these conference matches,” Messick said. “New

Mexico is a very good team and will likely be one of the toughest

matches all season. Right now everybody’s playing well and the team

is really coming together. Our best chance to get an NCAA berth is

to win the conference, so that’s our plan.”

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