They don’t want ‘love’

They+don%E2%80%99t+want+%E2%80%98love%E2%80%99

PATRICK HUNTER/THE HIGHLANDER

Emily Boro returning a hit during tennis practice on the campus courts February 23.

James Fisher, Reporter

Students are responding to a call for tennis players needed to fill out the sports’ rosters.

Allison Joanlanne, head coach of the men’s and women’s tennis team, sent out an announcement in January seeking student participation for this tennis season.

After the 2011 season Joanlanne lost five players from each team.  A minimum of six are required on each team. She said the announcement was to recruit replacements and invite new players.

“I did lose some players,” Joanlanne said. “We want to increase our roster to increase our chances of doing better in the MAC Conference.”

Joanlanne now has six players on her men’s roster and nine players on the women’s team. She said while some players are returning from previous seasons, people have responded to her announcement and have come out to join.

Breanne Philips, a sophomore on the women’s team, looks forward to welcoming new faces. “I think it’s great having so many new players come out,” Philips said. “We graduated a lot last year and didn’t have many players in the fall. I think it’s really good to get new players and get an experience for the future.”

Junior Sal Saraniti feels the same. “I welcome it,” said Saraniti. “The better people that we have the better it is for our team.”

Joanlanne has confidence t her sophomores have what it takes to lead the women’s team this season, even though they are young.

“They have a lot of potential and they’re good leaders. They’re very strong players,” said Joanlanne. “They’re doing well, they’ve been doing well and they will continue to do well.”

The only coach in the history of the tennis programs, Joanlanne is in her eighth season as women’s tennis coach and her fifth season as the men’s tennis coach. She was named the USTA Eastern Pennsylvania District Collegiate Coach of the Year in 2010. In the 2010-2011 seasons, she led the women’s team to an 11-9 record while improving her career mark to 68-31. The Cougars reached the Freedom Conference championship match for the third straight season. The women’s team has enjoyed a winning record in each of their seven varsity seasons. The men’s team earned a Freedom playoff berth in 2010–their third varsity season.

Philips believes that they are ready to lead this team for whatever obstacles lie ahead of them. “I think we definitely are old enough,” Philips said. “We have the experience of last year and we made it to the MAC Finals last year so we have a lot of experience in that. I think we have enough leadership even as sophomores to have enough experience.”

Philips went on to say that she’s confident that the women’s team can go back to the finals and make some noise.

While the women’s team is a very young team with a bright future, the men’s team not only has some youth, but a lot of experience in age.

The men’s team consists of two seniors, one junior, and three first years. With both youth and experience, Saraniti believes it will certainly come in handy for the men’s team. “It’s honestly how we all play with every match,” he said. “I think we can carry the team.”

Entering his third season with the team and being the only junior on the men’s squad right now, Saraniti will be the only returning senior when it comes time to return for the 2012-2013 tennis seasons. Even though he’s improved a lot over the years, he knows he can do much more to improve his game now so he can be better prepared to help lead this team in the future.

“[I will] keep working on my game and make that better,” Saraniti said. “Conditioning is always the main thing, [as well as] my stamina, and help recruit good kids. It’s all about how skilled you are and that’s kind of the main thing. We always want skilled people.”

The girls team will be looking to showcase how far their young leaders can take the team and how much more experience they’ve gained since last season. They will also be looking to showcase what the future holds for the women’s team with the young players getting all the experience in that they can.

The men’s team will be looking to make a lot of noise this season with their veteran leaders. The tennis season kicks off March 24 at Elizabethtown.