The Guilford College tennis teams have had opposite seasons so far. The men’s team has a 9-3 overall record and 6-0 in Old Dominion Athletic Conference play. The women’s tennis team has struggled with winning this season, only winning one non-conference game in 11 matches.
“I’ve been here eight years, and this is probably the strongest (men’s tennis team) we’ve had,” said head coach Dave McCain. “According to how the rest of the year goes, we potentially could win the conference.”
A big win for the team was on April 13, when they beat Hampden-Sydney College, 5-4, the third-place team in the preseason poll. Not only was it a big conference win, the team had lost the previous game to Methodist University and this allowed them to bounce back and have won the next two games.
Sophomore Tate Godwin has been the top player for the team at first singles and doubles. This spring, Godwin has gone 9-2 in singles matches and 7-3 doubles matches.
First-years Mason Robb and Elijah Gregory have been impactful in their first year at Guilford.
“Both of them are really, really good,” said McCain.
Robb was named this past week’s ODAC Men’s Tennis Player of the Week.
One problem for the men’s team has been injuries, but they have been able to fight through them to pull out victories.
A big matchup for the Quakers is happening Friday, April 20 as Guilford hosts Washington and Lee University. Washington and Lee are 8-0 in ODAC games this season and have won eight championships in a row and the 36th overall men’s ODAC title last year. The Generals defeated the Quakers in last year’s ODAC championship game.
“I lost five of the top six last year, which is horrendous, but I got a really good recruiting class in this year, and so actually we’re better than we were last year,” said McCain. “I think most of the teams in the ODAC thought we would be terrible because we lost our whole team.”
The Guilford women’s tennis team earned its first victory of the season on April 4 with an 8-1 win over William Peace University. This was the first win since Feb. 19, 2017, when Guilford beat Greensboro College, 9-0.
The women’s ODAC is led by Washington and Lee, who have not lost a game this season. The Generals are ranked 12th in Division III by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association. They have won 15 straight ODAC titles in a row and 27 overall.
The women’s team has four matches in the next week as it makes up some canceled matches from earlier in the season.
The women play away matches against Bridgewater College, Raandolp-Macon College, and Shenandoah University. The final home match will be against Washington and Lee University on April 26.
The men’s team also has four matches in the next week, hosting Washington and Lee before finishing the season with three away matches before the ODAC tournament begins on May 2.