Syracuse Tennis Reaches Schedule Hiatus at Perfect Time
By Samuel Reis | @SamuelReisTV
Citrus TV Tennis Beat Reporter
Heading into the season opener on January 21st, the prospect of 12 matches in 39 days seemed a bit intimidating for a team with just six players on its roster. Fast forward to the end of that stretch and Syracuse is off to its second best start in program history, only behind the 1978-79 campaign.
Sitting at 11-1, some might argue a break in action could fracture some momentum. However, looking at the other side of the coin, getting some much needed rest could be very beneficial. A magical season thus far for the Orange has been that much more impressive due to a number of factors. That includes having the minimum number of players possible on the roster, playing multiple duals that lasted over three hours, and playing a stretch of three matches in three days this past weekend. Through all of those obstacles, the Orange have still been successful. With that being said, a twelve day gap between Sunday’s win over Virginia Tech and the next match at Clemson is something SU won’t be complaining about.
Staying healthy is so crucial in ensuring that Syracuse remains successful through the final stretch of the regular season and ultimately the ACC Tournament and NCAA Tournament. One significant injury is all it could take to derail what has been an incredible season for the Orange. A few players have been battling through minor nagging injuries. That includes No. 1 singles player Zeynep Erman, who has been dealing with back tightness and had to forfeit her most recent match. This period of no matches gives players the opportunity to rest up and feel rejuvenated heading into the final part of the schedule.
One advantage SU has had so far this season is that 10 of its first 12 twelve matches were at home. Additionally, the two away matches were in the Northeast, at Drexel and Boston College. That means the latter part of the schedule will consist of plenty of travel. In fact, six of Syracuse’s final eight regular season matches are on the road. It all starts when the Orange return to action on Friday, March 17th at Clemson. That same weekend, SU makes a visit to Georgia Tech. The only two home matches remaining take place the following weekend when Syracuse hosts Duke and North Carolina. After that, the Orange head to NC State, Wake Forest, Notre Dame and Louisville to wrap up the regular season. Three days after the regular season concludes, they will head south again for the ACC Tournament.
That much travel on the horizon will likely take a toll on the team, especially if it wants to make a run once the postseason comes around. That is what makes this gap in the schedule even more important. No matter the circumstances, keeping up the incredible form won’t be an easy task. Taking advantage of this current break in the schedule could go a long way in making that possible. The Orange will look to rest up over the next week and find the necessary energy for the remainder of the season in what has been an incredible campaign up until this point.