Former players back on Baker courts for alumni match


Tennis alumni match:Senior Stephen Donly returns a serve during practice Wednesday.:Pat Howell

The Baker tennis teams saw a few old faces back on the courts as they hosted their annual alumni match Saturday.

In previous years the match was played in Overland Park during the spring semester. However, feedback from the alumni prompted head coach Bruce Anderson to make a change.

"What I started hearing from (alumni) last year was that they really wanted to play on the courts that they had played on here at Baker and they really wanted to play when the weather was good," Anderson said.

Both the athletes and the alumni felt making the change to the fall semester and hosting the match on Baker's courts seemed like a better fit.

"We thought about doing it in the spring, but the more we looked at our schedule for the spring, the crazier it looked, and so in conjunction with a couple of our old players we said ‘why don't we just do it in the fall?'" Anderson said.

Sophomore Laura Caby said the alumni match was a good experience for all the athletes involved.

"We had a really good turnout of lots of alumni that came in, and it was a good fundraiser for us," Caby said. "And also it was good time for team bonding and we kind of got to goof around, but at the same time, be serious and have fun with it all."

Sophomore Drew Richter said the alumni match provided the athletes with a great opportunity to meet previous Baker athletes.

"It was a good experience getting to meet some of the past players from the tennis team from years ago," Richter said. "And it was good competition, some of them were pretty good."

The alumni match gave the tennis teams a week off from regular play, but Anderson said the match served as another chance for the athletes to improve their skills.

"Well, we got to play a lot of people that we don't normally see, and it's not as though you are out there playing people that don't know how to play," Anderson said.

Despite some of the alumni being several years out of college, they served up some tough competition for the younger players.

"A couple of the guys really challenged our guys, and it was a lot of fun," Anderson said. "It just goes to show that you play tennis all your lives. Some of these guys probably haven't stopped playing since they left Baker."

The tennis teams are slated to play in two events Friday and Saturday, the Douglas County Closed Tournament and the Intercollegiate Tennis Association's Small College Championships. The teams will be sending two women, Laura Caby and Tresa Carter, and two men, Keith Pipkin and Drew Richter, to represent Baker at the ITA tournament located at the Country Club Plaza tennis courts in Kansas City, Mo. The remaining athletes will compete Friday night and Saturday night on the Baker Courts.



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