The big Quakers had no trouble dispensing with the little Quakers yesterday afternoon at the Levy Tennis Pavilion. The Penn men's tennis team, which, of course, goes by the name of the Quakers, dispensed with Haverford and Swarthmore -- two colleges founded by the Society of Friends -- in dominating fashion, by 7-0 scores against each foe. The Red and Blue won 11-of-12 singles sets and bettered their season record to the .500 mark at 4-4. Given that both the Fords and the Garnet Tide are Division III programs, Penn coach Gordie Ernst made sure to impress upon his team the importance of not playing down to its competition. "I told them coming in that they needed to focus on every point, and I think they did a pretty good job of having concentration," Ernst said. Penn had yet another reason for distraction yesterday. In little more than a week, the Quakers will board a plane for the white sandy beaches of Hawaii and an action-packed week of competition with teams from the 50th state. "I've been looking forward to Hawaii ever since I left last year," Penn captain Eric Sobotka said. Sobotka, nicknamed "Chewie" by Ernst on account of his last name's resemblance to that of Star Wars' lovable and furry Chewbacca, may have had yukelelees and pineapples on his mind, but he was dedicated to the task at hand yesterday. Penn No. 1 Sobotka blanked his Haverford opponent, 6-0, 6-0, and then went on to best Swarthmore junior Peter Schilla in straight sets, 6-1, 6-1. "He's the captain and he led this team today," Ernst said. "He's like the little toe of this team." The Red and Blue decimated Haverford in the first match of the afternoon. Penn junior Rob Pringle was masterful at the No. 2 spot, shutting out Matt Bernhard, 6-0, 6-0. The Quakers did not lose a set to the Fords in singles competition, and George Bulman at the No. 6 position was the only Haverford player to even win two games in a set. Each of the three Penn doubles teams also beat the Fords in style. None of the three lost more than two games in the eight-game set. The Quakers were similarly impressive in the nightcap against the Garnet Tide. The singles matches were a little tighter, owing in part to Penn's fatigue. Penn's Tyler Anderson lost the only singles set of the afternoon for the Quakers, but the Red and Blue emerged unscathed. The final doubles match of the day was closer than all the others. The Penn team of sophomore Brian Barki and Anderson trailed Swarthmore's Schilla and Jon Temin 5-2 after seven games. The Quakers duo battled back from there and wound up winning, 9-7. It had been something of a battle, but Penn emerged as the clearly superior squad. "Earlier this season we played Colgate, a team that is probably on par with the two we faced today, but we lost a doubles match," Sobotka said. "Frankly, to do that in our place today would have been a little embarrassing."Comments powered by Disqus
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