Temple's men's tennis team will take the court for the first time in 2013 this weekend, playing host to St. Francis (N.Y.) at the Upper Dublin Sports Club in Ambler, Pa. on Friday, January 25. The Owls begin the quest for an Atlantic 10 title in their final year in the conference, before moving to the BIG EAST Conference in the 2013-14 season.
The Cherry and White enjoy a home-heavy schedule this year, playing 12 of their 20 matches at their indoor facility, Legacy Youth Tennis and Education Center, or their outdoor courts on campus at TU Pavilion. Friday's match is the lone exception in home venues.
Only four of TU's home matches are against A-10 foes, but that does include two-time defending conference champion George Washington on March 2. Other league schools visiting the Owls are Richmond, La Salle and Saint Joseph's. The La Salle and Saint Joseph's matches come in a stretch of six-straight home matches to end the regular-season that also features Morgan State, Villanova, UMBC and Rider. Also on the home ledger are Davidson, Drexel and Delaware, in addition to 2012 NCAA participant Binghamton in early March.
The squad's A-10 road matches could prove challenging with trips to Duquesne and conference runner-up Xavier, as well as a journey to New York to take on Fordham. Of that trio, the Rams are the only team TU defeated last season.
Team captain Kacper Rams
is the lone senior on a very young team that also features two sophomores and three freshmen. Second-year players Kristian Marquart
and Hernan Vasconez
are the only other players with collegiate experience. Newcomers Hicham Belkssir
, Maros Januvka
and Nicolas Paulus
round out the small team.
Rams finished last season with a team-best 16 singles wins, going 16-16 overall. Playing the majority of his matches at No. 2, he was called upon to move up to the first flight when older brother Filip's injuries prevented him from playing. Kacper posted a respectable 3-3 record while playing his first-ever Temple matches at No. 1. In addition to his 12-7 record alongside his brother in doubles play, Kacper also paired up with four other teammates throughout the year to go 7-2 for a 19-9 overall doubles record. The 3.77 finance major, who was also a member of the A-10 All-Academic Team, has accumulated a 48-43 career singles record and 63-25 doubles mark in three years.
Temple finished last year 9-10 overall, going 4-2 against Atlantic 10 teams.
For more information on Temple men's tennis, visit www.facebook.com/Temple-University-Mens-Tennis and http://www.twitter.com/Temple_MTen.