Mountain Lions win two straight matches
Kim Barberi was tied with Debbie Deville at 2-2 in the second set Monday when it became clear that the fate of the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs women's tennis team was in her hands. All of the other scores were in, and the Mountain Lions were tied 4-4 with the Colorado Christian Cougars with only Barberi and Deville on the court.
Barberi, showing even more emotion than usual, held serve to go up 3-2. She aggressively charged the net to break Deville, then held serve again to go up 5-2. After a conservative lob cost her the first point of the next game, a voice rang out from the crowd.
"Don't worry about that one," shouted assistant men's basketball coach Lance Hammond who, because of his background as a college tennis player, has been drafted as a temporary assistant tennis coach. "Stay aggressive"
Barberi nodded in recognition and proceeded to put away the final four points, which included a beautiful (and yes, aggressive) backhand passing winner.
With that, CU-Colorado Springs defeated the Cougars 5-4 for their second consecutive win. Coincidentally, or perhaps not, both wins have come with Hammond in attendance.
"I'm not doing anything tennis-wise," said Hammond. "I'm just trying to give them some encouragement."
Whatever he, coach Matt Hays and the team are doing, it's working. After opening the season with 10 losses, the Mountain Lions beat Nebraska-Kearney 7-2 Saturday. With Monday's win, they've forged an unlikely winning streak at exactly the right time - in the final two matches prior to the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference tournament.
Barberi and Nikki Duval have both been outstanding, winning three consecutive singles matches each. Danele Brennenstuhl and Jessika Kardel have both won two of their past three, while Kardel and Katie McPhail have teamed to win 2-fo-3 at No. 2 doubles.
That kind of momentum could be a dangerous thing for RMAC rivals when they assemble in Grand Junction for the tournament on Friday. And if momentum isn't enough, the Mountain Lions have an ace in the hole - Hammond has promised to be in attendance. And whether that ace is a coach, cheerleader or good-luck charm doesn't seem to matter.
UCCS Players/Staff Featured
|Additional News Stories|
|April 23, 2004||Duvall named second-team All-RMAC||University of Colorado at Colorado Springs freshman Nikki Duvall was named second-team All-RMAC at No. 6 singles, the conference announced Friday.|
|April 12, 2004||Women's tennis falls to 0-9||The University of Colorado at Colorado Springs women's tennis team remained winless with a 9-0 loss to the Colorado College Tigers Monday.|
|March 31, 2004||Brennenstuhl wins twice but women's tennis falls||Despite a pair of wins by senior Danele Brennenstuhl, the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs women's tennis team was defeated 7-2 by the Colorado State-Pueblo Thunderwolves Wednesday at the Broadmoor.|
|March 12, 2004||Stong doubles play not enough in loss to Metro||While the sun was shining Friday, the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs women's tennis team's doubles was shining as well. Unfortunately, when the sun set, so did the hopes of defeating the defending Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference champion Metro State Roadrunners.|