Wildcats dominate Huskies

By John Dietz

In an exhibition of clear dominance Thursday afternoon, the Northwestern Wildcats swallowed up the Huskie tennis squad 9-0.

The Wildcats kicked all of their talent into high gear by not allowing NIU a set victory in any match. However, head coach Chuck Merzbacher did see signs of improvement from several of his players.

The most encouraging play came from No. 2 seed Dustin Dobrin who lost in a close match (7-5, 6-4) to Todd Occony.

“Dustin played real well in his match … we all played well and had good intensity. I felt as positive as you can after today’s loss,” Merzbacher said.

Merzbacher isn’t worried about this recent setback and continued to show confidence in his young team.

“They (the team) need to see this level of competition. If we played Northwestern in two months, I think we’d give them a run,” Merzbacher said.

Some valuable experience was gained for the young Huskie squad at Thursday’s meet.

Freshman Marty Engel fell to an experienced Giora Payes 6-2, 6-3 and newly-inserted freshman Corey Westphal had a strong showing against Tim Junker, losing 7-5, 6-3.

Merzbacher was also impressed with the play of Matt Green at the No. 4 seed. Green fell to Geoff Young 6-2, 7-5 but “played well,” said Merzbacher.

The Huskies’ next two chances to pull out victories will be against Western Michigan University on Saturday at 7 p.m and then Miami University Sunday at 8 a.m. The University of Notre Dame Collegiate Classic will be the site of these two matchups.

Right now Merzbacher is primarily concerned with getting his young team some experience on the courts.

“This may be one of my best teams ever. Our better tennis is ahead … we’re not really concerned about wins or losses right now,” Merzbacher said.