DSU tennis team hopes to advance

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The Dixie State University tennis team has been on a roll on the court recently with a five-match winning streak. 

The streak is coming just in time for a series of matchups this week against four of its Pacific West Conference foes.

In order for the Red Storm to make the PacWest tournament at the end of the season, Dixie State has to be within the top eight in its conference, making every conference matchup a crucial battle.

Last season came and went without a post-season bid for the Storm, but there is hope that this improved squad can continue its winning ways in conference play. Conference matchups this week will have a lot of say on deciding if the Red Storm will earn a spot in the top eight. 

“We know how important it is that we play well this week in order to qualify for the conference tournament,” said Sierra Smith, a junior elementary education major from Denton, Texas. “The matches we played over spring break really helped us with our mental toughness, I think. We are now fired up about our goal of making it to the conference tournament.”

In recent years, the DSU tennis team has been on the fringe of the playoffs in a tough PacWest Conference. This year’s competition is stacked, with six of this year’s top 20 tennis teams in the nation in DSU’s conference, making just about every PacWest Conference opponent a formidable challenge for the Red Storm.

DSU tennis is currently 10-7 on the year and won the Arizona Christian tournament in Phoenix two weeks ago.

In the tournament, Dixie lost its first game to Dallas Baptist University but followed it up by winning the next five games. In three of the five wins, Dixie won without losing a match, 9-0.

Summer Child, a sophomore psychology major from Wesley Chapel, Fla., is hoping DSU’s recent success translates into more conference victories this year.

“Recently, as a team, we have really pulled together, so I would say our success has a lot to do with our confidence in each other,” Child said. “It’s definitely been fun to get some wins over schools that were close losses last year. Our coach believes in us, and we all believe in each other.”

Dixie will face-off against conference foes Holy Names University and Notre Dame de Namur University this Thursday to begin its conference play.