In spite of his teamâ€™s four-match losing streak and upcoming contests against two of the top teams in the conference, CSU tennis coach Jon Messick said he feels good about his teamâ€™s chances.
â€œObviously we had a tough weekend (last weekend),â€ he said, â€œbut we were able to play at a pretty high level, and if we play at that level, we have a shot to win.â€
The Rams visit San Diego for back-to-back matches against San Diego state on UNLV today and Friday.
The Aztecs currently rank right above CSU in the conference standings at 2-3, 9-9 overall. Ranked as a top 75 team nationally, they have won two straight matches.
â€œTheyâ€™re gonna be real tough at home,â€ Messick said.
This week, the Mountain West Conference named Aztec junior Julia Trunk Co-Player of the Week after winning both of her singles and doubles matches against TCU and New Mexico.
Coincidentally, the other Co-Player of the Week was UNLV junior Jana Albers, who also went undefeated in singles and doubles against New Mexico and TCU.
Currently, the Rebels are ranked second in the conference at 4-1, 14-6 overall.
â€œWeâ€™ve got our work cut out for us,â€ Messick said Wednesday. â€œTheyâ€™re just both tough teams from top to bottom.â€
The Rams have lost their last four matches, two of which were at home, where they were previously undefeated. While most teamsâ€™ confidence would be shaken, Messick said he believes that varies by player.
â€œWe had a couple of players who won two out of the three matches, so I think theyâ€™re fairly confident,â€ the head coach said, â€œand I think some of the players that maybe lost some of their matches are feeling a little less confidence.
â€œEven the matches that we lost, weâ€™ve been competitive with our opponent, and I think everyone realizes that.â€
A win in either match would be CSUâ€™s first against a ranked team this season and could be crucial come time for the conference tournament.
â€œThatâ€™s basically what weâ€™re playing for right now,â€ Messick said, â€œis to get a more favorable seed in the tournament and get a more favorable first round match. I think you might consider this an upset-type match, and thatâ€™s really what weâ€™re looking to try to do.â€
Tennis Beat Reporter Kyle Grabowski can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.