Herd tennis prepares for conference play


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Marshall University plays Radford University at the Huntington Tennis Club in Barboursville, W.Va., on Sunday, Jan. 26.

Marshall University’s tennis team received the No. 2 seed and a first-round bye in the C-USA Women’s Tennis Championships.
The first round of the tournament starts Thursday.
Kai Broomfield, the lone senior on the Herd’s roster, said the team plans to make the most of its day away from competition.
“It’s definitely great that we got it,” Broomfield said. “I think the main benefit is that we now have an extra day to prepare and practice. Every team in our conference is pretty good. So, we really need to be prepared for each match we play.”
Despite the Herd’s recent wins against nationally-ranked DePaul University and the College of William & Mary, Broomfield said she realizes the conference tournament is another ball game.
“It’s a lot different than regular season matches,” Broomfield said. “There’s more pressure to win each point because the match is over once a team reaches four total points. That’s a big difference for the players.”
The Herd’s Rachel Morales said she believes if the team stays focused it will come away from the 14-team tournament with the championship.

We really need to be prepared for each match we play.”

— Kai Broomfield

“We have so much talent on the team,” Morales said. “Everyone works hard and gives everything they have for every match. We just need to focus on one match at a time and not get ahead of ourselves.”
Morales said head coach John Mercer prepared the team for this moment throughout the entire season.
“Coach Mercer has told us that anything can happen in the tournament,” Morales said. “He just keeps telling us to stay positive no matter what and to control the things we can while not letting the things we can’t control bother us.”
Marshall will face the winner of the opening-round match between No. 7 UTEP and No. 10 University of Texas at San Antonio in the quarterfinals.
The quarterfinals match is set for 11 a.m. Friday at Rice University’s George R. Brown Tennis Center in Houston, Texas.
Malcolm Walton can be contacted at [email protected]