Under the guidance of new head coach Jon Reeves, the Montana State women’s tennis team opened up their 2015-16 slate in Pullman, Washington to compete in the Cougar Classic. The annual event, hosted by Washington State University, differs from the traditional collegiate tennis format and instead consists of tournament-style brackets on both the singles and doubles sides, rather than best-of-seven match play. The University of Montana, Lewis-Clark State College and Gonzaga University joined the Cats and the Cougars at the event.
Singles play began with a field of 32 competitors on the first day and a handful of play-in matches as well as a 16 team doubles component. The single-elimination tournament quickly whittled down the Bobcat contingent, with no players advancing past the initial elimination rounds. Doubles play was kinder to the Cats, but only by a bit. Only the junior duo of Laura Middel and Jess Brycki advanced past the first round, but the other MSU duos put in some tough fights. Middel and Brycki weren’t quite so fortunate in the next round, losing a tough match, getting swept 6-0 by WSU’s Huynh and Miksovska.
The Bobcat women fared much better in the consolation rounds, winning five of their seven matches in singles play. They also won three of their doubles consolation matches.
“It was exciting to be at our first Fall tournament and to start getting some matches under our belt,” junior Jessica Brycki said. “Match play is extremely important, and with a new coach by our side, our team will definitely have different ideas and a very positive perspective going into the new season.” With only a handful of practices under the new skipper, things will surely improve as the Cats draw closer to the start of the conference season next semester.