Tennis picking up steam: Men and women hit midseason form

Howard Telson won 6-0, 6-0 vs. RU. (Tom O'Dell/Photo Editor)

Both of the College’s tennis teams had strong performances this past week, with the men holding strong against Division I schools and the women continuing to dominate the NJAC as well as all others.

The men faced off with Rider University in Ewing on Friday in the first part of the New Jersey Invitational and bested their Division I adversary in all but one match. Junior TJ Riley headlined for the College, winning both his singles match 6-1, 6-1 and his doubles match (teamed with junior Rishi Rajpal) 8-1.

Other key performers in the Rider match included sophomore Howard Telson, who won 6-0, 6-0, and sophomore Gurkirat Kohli, who won 6-0, 6-2.

The men then faced off with St. Peter’s College and Monmouth University on Saturday, winning 11 of their 18 matches against the two Division I foes. Riley shined once again, going 3-0 against the Hawks and Peacocks.

The women had similar amounts of success, beating Richard Stockton 9-0 on Wednesday,  Sept. 7 and extending their nearly 30-year-old win streak against the NJAC.

Following their trouncing of Stockton, the women traveled to the Trinity College Tennis Invitational on Saturday and Sunday, winning two individual titles and a doubles title in their appearance. Juniors Allison Tierney and Karisse Bendijo faced each other in the final for first singles, with Tierney coming out on top. The two then proceeded to win the doubles title together.

“I think the wins from this weekend are not only from our talent but the great attitudes that everyone displayed, especially the freshmen,” said senior Felice Trinh, who was out with a sprained ankle. “They weren’t sure what to expect, but they went out there and gave their all.”

Trinh believes that the key to the match was effort as well, and that the team succeeded because of their will to win.

“Watching everyone play, you could really tell that we wanted to win and the matches were amazing,” Trinh said. “The girls really fought hard.”

The men will be traveling to the Villanova Tournament this coming weekend while the women will have a big home stand, starting with William Paterson on Wednesday night and including the Lions’ Fall Tournament on Saturday.

“We’re going to go out there like we do with any other match,” Trinh said, “(with) our talent, a great attitude and the mentality to fight and win.”