Tennis team learns from losses

The men’s tennis team played in the GLVC/GLIAC Crossover in Plainfield, IL March 17 through March 19 where it went 2-1 in the three games.

No. 34 Southern Indiana opened with a 6-3 loss to No. 20 Ferris State University Friday, including a loss by sophomore James Hardiman, who currently leads the Eagles with 19 wins.

“It was a tough match against a good team. We played good doubles, though. We had a good win at number one, a tough loss at number two and a big win at number three (in doubles),” Hardiman said.

Hardiman and his doubles partner, Denis Davydov, won their matches Friday and Saturday but lost Sunday to Rockhurst, giving the duo a 13-3 record for the season.

Hardiman said he will gain experience from losing, and he’s going to try and learn whatever he can from the losses suffered during the Crossover play.

“I just remember there’s going to be more matches to come,” Hardiman said. “I just have to keep working hard and focusing on future matches.”

The Eagles bounced back by taking the other two games of the Crossover, 7-2 against Northwood Saturday and 5-4 against Rockhurst.

USI’s head coach, Chris Crawford, said overall, he was pleased with the team’s performance against competition from the GLIAC, including the match against Ferris State who handed the team their sixth loss of the season and bringing them to 12-6 overall.

“It shows them (the team) they belong. We’re right there with them,” Crawford said. “It’s not a big margin of talent. It proves to them that we can play at this level.”

Crawford said he thinks his team is ready for conference play since they’ve had more matches than most of the other GLVC teams with 18 on the season.

“We just need to put a lot of balls in play and play smart,” Crawford said. “We’ve played enough matches that we should be playing better at this point.”

USI begins GLVC play Saturday on the road against the University of Illinois Springfield, Prairie Stars, who are on a three-game skid and 4-6 overall.