Tennis falls to MAAC foes

By Carlos Toro

As the Rider tennis team’s fall season comes to an end, both the men and women’s teams faced Quinnipiac on Oct. 8 and Fairfield on Oct. 10.

Both teams lost to their conference foes, but several Bronc players pulled off a couple of victories in their singles matches.

Freshman Cyd Melendez, who won her fourth career singles match in her collegiate career against Quinnipiac, said that while the team didn’t win, the trip was not a waste for either team.

“The team played well in general, but our opponents were very solid,” Melendez said. “Even though the results weren’t beneficial this time, we did improve in other ways.”

Against Quinnipiac, sophomore Ryan Ciaccio had the closest match of the day for the men when he lost to senior Ryoma Haraguchi by a score of 6-1 and 6-4.

For the women, Melendez’s match against Bobcats’ sophomore Jennifer Lu ended in a loss, with Melendez falling in straight sets 6-4 and 6-2. In doubles, Melendez and freshman Vanessa Canda lost 6-1.

The team did fare better when it hosted Fairfield on Oct. 10. Canda and Melendez won their doubles match against junior Sarah Stuhlmann and freshman Diana Prinos by a score of 6-3. Melendez then had a come-from-behind victory in her singles match against Prinos. After losing the first set by a score of 6-1, Melendez won the second set 6-4 before winning the tiebreaker set 6-0.

Even though freshman Amanda Binder lost her singles match against freshman Shelby Vertula, it was an extremely close match. Binder lost the first set by a score of 6-4 and was in danger of losing the second set when she was trailing 5-3. She lost the match 6-4 and 7-5.

On the men’s side, the duo of freshman Griffin Clark and sophomore Brandon Gildea fell to Quinnipiac, 6-4.

In the singles portion, Clark lost his match against Rodgers in straight sets by scores of 6-1 and 6-2.

Both the men’s and women’s teams are finished with the conference portion of the fall season but still have several more matches to play. The men host Fordham on Oct. 12.

Then, both the men’s and women’s teams will travel to St. Thomas Aquinas for a dual match on Oct. 15, and then go to Holy Cross on Oct. 16.

Melendez said that the team has been working hard on honing their skills.

“We’re improving day in and day out,” she said.

“There’s a lot of things that each player can improve upon, and I think as we keep improving, the team benefits from that as well,” Melendez said. “We’re improving day in and day out and in each practice and match.”

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