The Plattsburgh State tennis team ended its regular season by winning six matches in a row by sweeping its most recent weekend full of matches against Johnson State, Oswego State and Utica College.
After winning on senior day at home 8-0 Friday, the Cards finished the weekend on the road and face off against Oswego State and Utica College, winning both matches 9-0 and 8-1, respectively.
“These three wins were huge for the team,” senior Jacqueline Ciriello said. “Now we have this winning record that is better than the previous years, and we’re definitely looking to take what we learned this season into our next match.”
Over the three match weekend, Ciriello and doubles teammate freshman Sierra Barrett were awarded SUNYAC Tennis Doubles Team of the Week honor for their efforts that helped the Cardinals complete a successful weekend.
“Being named doubles team of the week definitely boosts our confidence, and it lets us know that we’re being watched,” Ciriello said. “It makes everything we’ve been doing even more worthwhile.”
Over the course of the season, the doubles teammates accumulated a record of 9-3 while playing on the court as a unit.
“Sierra and I have become so much more confident in our play,” Ciriello said. “We just have to continue to go into every match with a positive mindset no matter who the opponent is.”
The Cards will advance to the SUNYAC tournament with an overall record of 9-3, a win total that has not been met by PSUC since 2011, and a lot of the credit is to be given to the job that head coach Annmarie Curle has done since taking over the program in 2014.
“Her positive attitude is contagious,” senior Sarah Drexinger said about Curle. “She has completely changed our program over the past three years. Her mentality is, ‘win or lose, I want you to give it your hardest out there,’ no matter the outcome.”
Since taking over as head coach, this is Curle’s most successful season so far. However, with the SUNYAC pool play starting this weekend, there is still a lot at stake before deeming this season a complete success.
“A win on Saturday would not only put is in good contention for the rest of the tournament, but it would feel really good especially it being my senior year,” Drexinger said.
PSUC has dominated in its singles and doubles matches this year, and will be looking forward to the challenges upcoming in the first round of SUNYAC pool play Saturday against Fredonia.
Compared to previous seasons, this postseason for the Cards holds a lot of promise due to their high level of play at a consistent rate during the regular season, and will make them a strong force against their conference opponents this year.
“Whether it’s SUNYACs or a nonconference match, you have to treat it like any other match,” Ciriello said. “You have to go into SUNYACS with a positive attitude and feel confident for the reason why you’re competing.”
This weekend’s match against Fredonia will be held at Binghamton University at 2 p.m., and will kick off PSUC’s SUNYAC tournament play.
With the regular season in behind them, the Cards have gained confidence from each of their wins this season. In particular, being able to overcome teams that have been known for having successful tennis programs, PSUC may no longer seem like the underdog to fellow conference opponents.
“We’re beating teams we never thought we’d beat,” Ciriello said. “We’ve all put a lot of work in this season, and we’re looking forward to the games to come.”
Email Ezra Kachaturian at firstname.lastname@example.org