STORY BY ADAM ROGAN
The Bulldogs took down two opponents on Saturday, sweeping Truman State University in the early afternoon and doing the same to the University of Nebraska Omaha that evening.
“Some people had to step up and play, and I think we did a really good job in doing that … and coming out here and competing. I think Nebraska Omaha came out really strong in the doubles and we responded in the singles,” coach Sadhaf Pervez said.
Jordan Eggelston left the Roger Knapp Tennis Center happy, with Drake earning two big team wins in one day and for all of the energy her team left on the court.
“I think we really just needed to stay focused and really work on what we do best, which is attacking and playing our game and really just staying aggressive and playing our game and being loud,” Eggelston said. “We’re a very aggressive team and that’s what we’re known for, is our juice. That’s what we really brought today. I think that’s why we did so well.”
Senior Nell Boyd won in straight sets in each of her singles matches, while winning 6-0 and 6-3 in doubles alongside Summer Brills. These wins snapped a two match individual skid for Boyd, improving to 12-6 in singles and to 13-7 in doubles for the season.
Even as things improve for Drake, Boyd still thinks the team has a ways to go.
“I think we just need to keep improving on getting better as individuals and that makes us better as a team,” Boyd said. “We just need to keep building up that confidence and moving forward and we’ll just keep getting better and better.”
Coach Pervez agrees, as the team still has areas in which they could improve.
“I think we need to get a little more mentally tough,” Pervez said.
However, Pervez is proud of her team, as she has seen them grow and succeed in the two years she has coached the Bulldogs.
“I’m seeing a lot of improvements every single day. The girls are getting more consistent. They’re playing a little bit more disciplined,” Pervez said. “I’d like to see a little bit more of it, but it’s just going to take a little more time. I think the freshmen are just coming in and challenging everyone and (the freshmen are) just ready to go, right from the get-go.”
This improvement can be attributed to the work each girl put in off the court, not just from their energy level in matches.
“We’ve been doing a lot of work on the court, a lot of lifting in the gym. We really are trying to get stronger and really work on our weaknesses and what we really need to improve on,” Eggelston said. “We’re really working on just really staying aggressive and being able to come in and put the points away from the net.”
The Bulldogs hope to continue their success in the coming week, facing off on the road against Nebraska on Friday and Eastern Michigan this Saturday.