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The Daily Utah Chronicle

The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

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Men’s tennis: Utes disappointed in weekend play, look to move on

The 54th-ranked Utah men’s tennis team had three matches at the Eccles Tennis Center over the long weekend and came out on the losing end twice.

The Utes (5-3) finished their weekend on Monday losing to Iowa, 4-3. Cedric Willems and Matt Cowley were able to win their doubles match and Willems also won his singles match against Iowa’s Lefteris Theodorou. But it wasn’t enough as Utah lost it’s second straight match.

Head coach Roeland Brateanu was not pleased with how the Utes played on Monday and said the weekend was unsuccessful.

“It was a disappointing weekend,” Brateanu said. “We could have, and probably should have, won this match against Iowa. We’re up and in control of the match and we didn’t finish the job today. I was disappointed because we lost our discipline and didn’t compete great.”

The team is not feeling too great after their effort and the coaching staff has reiterated all season that they can deal with losses, so long as they are hard-fought.

“It’s not so much about the wins or losses,” Brateanu said. “It’s how we compete, it’s how we go out there. It’s about our effort and that’s what we’re upset about today. It was very uncharacteristic for this group of guys.”

During their first match of the weekend on Saturday, the Utes defeated Northern Colorado 7-0, but things quickly went south from there.

Utah faced Denver later the same day, weren’t able to continue the momentum and lost, 6-1. Freddie McGeehan walked away the Utes’ only winner. Utah also dropped two doubles, but the duo of Willems and Cowley were able to prevail to go undefeated in the day’s two matches.

“They served really well and were very aggressive moving forward up the net,” Brateanu said.

Willems said he was pleased with his individual results, with the exception of a singles loss against Denver.

“In doubles, I’m playing really well Matt, my singles matches are going well also except for that one match I lost [against Denver],” Willems said. “I didn’t play poorly, just a couple points that made the difference in the end.”

Willems also said the entire team was dealt a rough hand against the Pioneers.

“It was a very hard loss,” Willems said. “I don’t think the score really reflected how the match went, because it could have been the other way.”

Brateanu said although the score may have looked as if they did not put up much of an effort, he was proud of how they competed in each individual match.

“We played a very competitive match against a very good Denver team,” Brateanu said. “I was proud of the way we competed that day and we really put ourselves in a position to win that match with all the opportunities we had and we made Denver earn it.”

Although it was their second match of the day, Brateanu said the team is well conditioned and fatigue was not a factor.

After losing twice over the weekend, Utah will get a chance to bounce back with two matches this Saturday.

“We need to let these losses go,” Brateanu said. “We need to learn from them. We need to get back to our roots, which is our discipline and making sure we do the easy things right because that’s where we failed at today [against Iowa].”

Willems agrees with his coach, saying they need to push past these losses and learn from what they did wrong.

“We need to make sure we’re going to have a great week of practice,” Willems said. “After two losses it’s easy to get in your head and we just got to go through the motions. We need to work extra hard to make sure we’re ready Saturday.”

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