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Tennis teams shew premise as faii seasen heats
np en the ceurts
COACH AND PLAYERS ALIKE LOOK
FORWARD TO WHAT THIS YEAR'S
TENNIS SEASON WILL SERVE THEM
BY ALAYNA BRADLEY
The season is already underway for the Guilford College
men's and women's tennis teams, and it is shaping up to
be a good one.
According to head tennis coach Dave McCain, the season
is split between seven weeks in the fall and 12 weeks in the
spring. Some coaches choose to only have a spring season,
but as McCain said, "Most good teams play in the fall."
"In the fall, we see what we have for first-years,
see how they'll do, (and) we work out (the) doubles
team for the rest of the season," said Allison Hewitt, a
sophomore singles and doubles player. "Coach will move
us around sometimes to see which doubles team works
And Guilford's team is looking great.
"I have a great group of players and people. This is
probably the easiest team I've coached in a long, long time
and this is probably the easiest team to get along with,"
said McCain in regards to both the men and the women.
"They're good people and they're trying really hard; the
effort level is terrific. I'm very happy with my team this
year. I haven't always said that."
At the end of September, the men's team played at
Emory University in Atlanta.
"We played the ITA tournament — which is the
International Tennis Association Tournament — at Emory
University. We competed in a singles bracket and a doubles
bracket," said Turner Votipka, sophomore and award
winning tennis player.
"I was the only person to win our first round match,
and we had three guys win their second round in the
consolation bracket," said Votipka. "Another guy made
it to the semi-finals in the consolation brackets, so it was
McCain said that the ITA is very tough. Six of the
Quakers each competed against a player from Emory,
whose team is the top men's team in the nation, but they
still held their ground.
"I think our men's team is solid all the way through,"
said McCain. "We've actually got 12 guys that could
interchange into the top six. I think we're probably going
to be about like last year, maybe a little stronger."
Votipka is also hopeful about the men's team, even
though lots of them are first-years.
"We have a really young team but it's all pretty level
all the way down," said Votipka. "We've got some pretty
good freshmen, so hopefully we can all hold our own (and)
just keep improving. We should probably be as good, if not
better, than last year."
Women's tennis also looks promising this year.
"I think we will do a lot better than last year," said
Hewitt. "We are a lot stronger than we were last year. We
added three first-years onto the team and they're good
"They have two really good first-years and another first-
year that plays doubles pretty well," said Votpika about
the newcomers. "And we have a first-year that might be
playing in our number one spot, but now she's playing our
two, which is good."
After this pre-season, the tennis team has a tough
schedule for the 2012-13 year. The men's team is playing
two Division I teams — Liberty University and The
Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina — as well
as a couple of Division II schools.
"I have a great group of players and
people. This is probably the easiest team
I've coached in a long, long time and this
is probably the easiest team to get along
Dave McCain, head tennis coach
"Our guys finished third in the Old Dominion Athletic
Conference last year, and the women finished fifth," said
McCain. "You kind of have to have schedules that reflect
where they play. We want to have a good season and some
of the matches we'll lose, but what you're really preparing
for are the ODAC tournaments. ODAC might look a little
easier after you play Liberty and The Citadel."
Controversy arises over NFL replacement referees
BLOWN CALLS AND FAN
PROBLEMS DURING THE
BY BRYAN DOOLEY
What kind of call is that? Do these refs
know what they are doing? The National
Football League recently found itself under
scrutiny after it locked out experienced
referees and hired less knowledgeable
Most of the scrutiny began after a
controversial call on Sept. 24 during the
Seattle Seahawks game against the Green
Bay Packers. On the last play of the game,
the Seahawks' desperation pass was rulecl
an interception by one official, and a
touchdown by another. After a conference
between the officials, Wayne Elliot, the
head official, ruled a touchdown.
Many observers would disagree.
"I think they jeopardized the integrity
of the game and gave people more reason
to blame outside forces for losses instead
of taking responsibility for it themselves,"
said first-year quarterback Mitchell Ferrick.
Ferrick explained that despite the bad
call, the Packers still had the chance to win.
"There were plays that whole game that
could have been made for Green Bay, that
could have changed the game," added
Some fans still blame the referees for
being unqualified to call NFL games.
"I thought the replacement officials
were just not up to par or qualified to be
officiating NFL games," said senior Lamar
Cassell, a sports management major. "That
point was proven by the product the NFL
was giving its fans with all the games that
were officiated by replacement officials."
Others disagree, pointing out the difficult
situation in which the replacement officials
"Too many times we want to blame
officials for calls that 'made us lose,'"
said Steve Fleshman, head of officials for
the Old Dominion Athletic Conference.
"Everyone talked about the bad call made
at the end of the Green Bay game. I never
heard anyone mention the fact that Aaron
Rogers (quarterback for the Packers) was
sacked eight times in the first half."
Bob Malekoff, associate professor
of sport studies, sympathizes with the
"Clearly they were put in a tough spot
and, not surprisingly, did not measure up
to the regular officials," said Malekoff.
"One problem that replacement refs had
was that coaches and players were trying
to gain an advantage by intimidating them.
They never really had a chance to gain the
kind of control that the regular refs have."
When referees are in control, the players
determine the quality of the game.
"A well officiated game will allow for a
safe environment, as well as let the outcome
be determined by the play of the game,"
said Chris Rusiewicz, head football coach.
Coaches and players agree that officials
help to maintain the integrity of the game.
NFL referees signal a touchdown following a Seattle receiver's disputed catch against the
Green Bay Packers on Monday Night Football on Sept. 24.
"I think the officials are there to hold
players and coaches accountable," said
Paris El-Ali, a junior and captain of the
football team. "Good referees uphold the
integrity of the game because more often
than not, little gets past them."
However, even good referees make
"I have officiated for over 20 years," said
Fleshman. "Every official who has been
doing this for any length of time has been
involved with a bad call. Sometimes the
outcome of a bad call affects the game. That
is just part of the game.
"If we take the human element out of it,
we no longer have a game."