Harvard's talent-laden varsity tennis team finds itself out of the Ivy League race and in a 2-6 hole, but attitude should be the only barrier to a big Crimson win over traditionally weak Brown this afternoon at Providence.
Brown, 0-3 in the Eastern Intercollegiate Tennis Association, boasts little established talent except at number one, where hockey star Mike Powers gives the Bruins respectability. Last Wednesday Brown lost to a weak Dartmouth team, playing with out its undefeated number one, Lloyd Ucko.
Harvard's record is deceptive. Although it won only one of five matches on the Southern trip, the competition was the best in the South and had been playing competitively since February. The Crimson opened its Northern schedule last weekend visiting the two best teams in the EITA. Columbia and Princeton. The remainder of the schedule, however, poses little threat to the Crimson, except for Penn.
The Crimson's mental attitude will be a question mark this afternoon. On the one hand, the team no longer is chasing the EITA title, and on the other Harvard has traditionally whipped Brown and this could make the team complacent.
Harvard has been bothered this season by its lack of practice on clay. It's one win was inside, and it has been practicing inside on the hard courts of Palmer Dixon building. However the match this afternoon will be on hard courts--to the Crimson's advantage.
Harvard's injury report has changed only a little. Ken Lindner, who played over the weekend with a pinched nerve in his shoulder, seems much improved. However, co-captain have Fish, sidelined with a bad elbow, seems out for the season. "He hit some today, and the minute he hit a backhand his arm hurt," coach John Barnaby said yesterday. "I think he's seriously injured. For his own good he should forget it for the season and give his arm a good cure," he added. A former number-two player, Fish and sophomore Gardie Rowbotham won the ECAC Division B doubles championship this Fall.
At number one for the Crimson, sophomore Harris Masterson has been off his game. "He's had trouble getting in top shape and he hasn't played consistently," Barnaby said. "He's going to have a very tough match with Powers."
Lindner, freshmen John Inguard, Tom Loring, Randy Barnet and co-captain Chris Nielson complete the Crimson's singles line up. Nielson played three two years ago and his position this season at six shows the depth of Harvard tennis. Masterson and Lindner, Nielson and Inguard, and Loring and Barnett will be the Crimson's doubles teams.
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