Monday, February 8, 2010

Weekend Thoughts Feb 5-7

We had several top 25 teams in action and I'll just go through each quickly. I'll touch on Trinity (TX), Wash U, Chicago and finally Kenyon vs Kalamazoo. There were other teams in action but I thought these were most important.

Trinity (TX) played three matches and it is extremely clear where they need work even after the first weekend. They played 2 D2 schools both ranked top 30 as well as an NAIA school. They went 7-2 in doubles and 4-14 in singles, including 0-9 in the 3 through 5 singles spots. Now I don't doubt their opponents were good but they won fairly comfortably in doubles and just got steamrolled in singles barely winning sets. They have a while before their first big D3 matches, but if I were the Tigers I'd be working on my singles.

Wash U played an annual D2 powerhouse in Drury University. I really like the fact that the Bears won the #2 doubles match, because I think this will be a huge spot for them this season. An interesting singles lineup for the Bears with Woods moving down to 4 and Stein up to 2, but they played Drury very tough. The match came down to the wire with Drury winning all 3 of the 3-set matches to take a 6-3 win. If I'm the Bears, I like the fact that I was right there at the end. This is a pretty good result for them going to Indoors. I think they need to focus on getting ahead of Hopkins in doubles and if they can do this, they are tough to beat.

Chicago went to Madison to play UW-Whitewater. Although they lost 2 of the doubles, they really were good in singles, winning all 6 matches. Chicago has Wash U this weekend and they need to be ready to play. I'll do a preview of the match later this week.

The big match of the weekend was Kenyon vs Kzoo. I expected a little more out of Kenyon and I thought this match would be 8-1 or 9-0. Although Kzoo lost, they put up a good fight despite the fact they weren't really close to winning. Vandenberg losing at 3 is understandable, but Brody should not be losing at 6 and the 1 doubles spot is huge for Kenyon. If Greenberg/Vandenberg aren't a force this year, the Lords have no shot at a national title. If Kzoo can consistently play this well, they could be a top 20 team this year. I think this match showed both teams they have a lot of room for improvement.