Coe, Augustana Slated for DIII Debut

The No. 6 Chicago men’s tennis squad heads to Cedar Rapids, IA to compete against No. 36 Coe and unranked Augustana in their second and third dual meet of the year. The Maroons are coming off a 6–1 win over Chicago State last weekend in their season opener. .

By Erik Wong

After finishing with a commanding 6–1 victory in its last match against Chicago State University, the Maroons look forward to their upcoming match against No. 36 Coe College.

With the victory against Chicago State, the men’s squad moved up two spots in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association rankings from No. 8 to No. 6, leaving the Maroons as one of the top teams in DIII Tennis Competition. This upcoming match against Coe (who has yet to play a match this season) is important for the Maroons, who look to start their season with another win in order to prepare for a tough schedule ahead. Coe can certainly not be taken lightly, though.

“Against Coe specifically, we played them last year and it was closer than the score indicated,” second-year David Liu said. 

This proves the importance of this early match up because the Maroons do not want to let a quality win slip away from them. Liu also said, “We have a few important matches in the coming weeks, including two against top 20 teams at home, and it will be important for us to be well rested and focused,” showing the kind of mentality the South Siders have going into this next match up, as well as the weeks that follow. 

In men’s singles play, Coe will field standout second-year Brady Anderson, as well as fourth-year Ryan Hickman, both of whom will provide some tough competition for Chicago. On the other side, though, Chicago will field several outstanding players of their own.

One of these players, second-year Nate Chua, is the No. 2 singles player in the Central Region for DIII. Chua won with comfort last week, and looks to continue his success against Coe. The Maroons will also call upon the steady performer in David Liu, as well as first-year Charlie Pei, who won his match last week in high fashion.

As for doubles, look for Chua and Liu to combine their strengths as the first team. The second team will consist of Charlie Pei and second-year Peter Leung, and the third team will feature first-year Max Liu and third-year Max Hawkins.

Liu provided some key insight into the strategy the team has when he said, “We can really set ourselves apart in doubles play, so if we can jump to a 3–0 lead going into singles, we should have no problem finishing from there.”

Despite this confident approach, the Maroons have treated practice this week the same as any other match up. Chua said, “This weekend will be more about playing our games than changing anything for our opponents particularly,” which shows that the Maroons will have to be fundamentally sound to come out with a win.

With such a deep roster, the men have a chance for great success this season, but they must remain calm under pressure and focused on their goals. Coe is another check on the list. Come out to the match this weekend, which is home this Sunday, January 31 at 11 a.m.