Tennis holds serve

Billy Piotrowski, Sports Reporter

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The UW Oshkosh Tennis began the season in Whitewater on Friday and Saturday, Aug. 30 and 31.

The Titans fell to the Warhawks on the 30th 9-0 and placed seventh of eight teams in the UW-Whitewater Warhawk Invite on the 31st.

With a current record of 2-2, head coach Robert Henshaw commented on what the team is doing right, and what he believes needs to happen for the Titans to reach their full potential.

“I love our singles lineup when we are full-strength,” Henshaw said.

Henshaw is confident with his players as he looks ahead to the rest of the season.

“We have strong competitors, and I think we have the strongest team we’ve had since I’ve arrived,” Henshaw said.

Henshaw said right now he’s experimenting with different combinations until he finds the right doubles team.

“We have players with a lot of experience in doubles, but I need to find teams that complement each other’s playing style,” Henshaw said. “Once we get a handle on that, we will be very tough.”

The Titans kicked off September with back-to-back wins against Lawrence University (6-3) on Sept. 3 and Ripon College (9-0) on Sept. 5.

Two days later, the Titans fell to Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference rival UW-La Crosse in a 9-0 sweep, giving Oshkosh the 2-2 record they hold today.

In doubles against La Crosse, junior Lesley Kutnink and sophomore Taylor Johnson fought hard but fell 8-7.

Kutnink talked about how, win or lose, she and Johnson work together very well.

“Playing with Taylor at number three doubles has been great so far,” Kutnink said. “We really have on-and off-court chemistry with each other. If Taylor isn’t playing her best, I seem to lift her up and vice versa.”

Kutnink also talked about what she is looking forward to as the season progresses.

“I’m very excited for home conference matches,” Kutnink said. “I think our team has great depth in the line-up, and we have very strong singles players.”

Looking forward, the Titans will travel to Holland, Michigan for the Hope College Invitational. The Titans will then close out the month with matchups at home against Marian University Sept. 19 and UW-Stevens Point Sept. 26, and away against St. Norbert College Sept. 28 and UW-River Falls Sept. 29.

Senior Alyssa Leffler elaborated on the excitement she and her teammates feel for the months to come.

“[We are] very excited to see what the future has to hold,” Leffler said. “We are all super positive and determined to achieve our goals. We all complement each other very well.”