Harvard Tennis: News and Views
2014 Season Begins Tomorrow in Starkville, MS
In this issue:
Preview of #26 Harvard vs. #13 Miss State (rematch of last year's NCAA battle)
Who are the frosh?
Video Interview with Dave Fish about 2014 Campaign
Eric Butorac in the finals of the Aussie Open (video link)
Rueb gets married (photos)
Dear Crimson Netters,
We will start the 130th season of Harvard Tennis tomorrow in Mississippi against the MSU Bulldogs. Tomorrow's other match-up in Starkville features the #18 South Carolina Gamecocks against #21Memphis Tigers. This is the first round of the ITA Kick-Off Event in which the winner of the bracket qualifies for a spot in the National Indoors in Houston, TX. The finals and third-fourth playoff will take place on Sunday. You can follow the live scoring by clicking on this link. The match is scheduled to start at 1pm but will depend on how long the first match goes.
The team has been enjoying more than a week of training that began with the first day of practice on January 15th. With no exams and no classes (Spring semester starts on Monday) it has left lots of time for team bonding, two-a-day training sessions and good rest. We played a scrimmage against Dartmouth on Monday in Cambridge and lots of intra-squad challenge matches. Many of the names and faces will be familiar to you from the past few years but I would like to take a moment to introduce the three new freshmen who all will be starting tomorrow in singles and/or doubles. They are a superb class and will be making a big splash in 2014.
Andrew Ball – Palo Alto, CA and the Menlo School: Andrew is a tough all-around competitor. With a pro caliber backhand, great speed and strength on a small frame, Andrew is a tough out at any spot in the lineup. He has been developing the finishing tools that will help him compete with the best in the country. His father, Ben Ball, was a member of the Harvard class of 1988 and Andrew is continuing the Crimson tradition. Nickname: "Baller"
Brian (Pak Long) Yeung – Hong Kong and the Diocesan Boys School: Brian is an amazing talent with huge game. His first serve and backhand are world-class. Brian will be starting in the second doubles slot and is a total force at the net. Anyone who watches him play will love his zest for competition and his big smile. Watch out for his war cry – as Brian has some pipes! Nickname: "Pie-Bri" or "PacMan"
Sebastian Beltrame – Orlando Florida and Olympia High School: Sebastian is hard to miss at 6' 5". His serves alone are enough to startle a first time onlooker. Sebastian, at his best, inflicts his will upon his opponents with his huge leverage. He pounds away from the back and presses forward on anything short. His father, Lorenzo, is a star tennis coach and his mother, Kim, is an Italian teacher. One of the many coach/teacher parenting combinations that we find at Harvard! They met in Milan while Kim was doing graduate work and Lorenzo was playing tennis (Lorenzo is Italian if you couldn't tell by his name). Nickname: "Sebe" or "Seabass."
Congrats to Eric who is in the finals of the Aussie Open tomorrow morning. He will play in the Rod Laver Arena after the women's final around 5:30am. The match will be broadcast on the tennis channel. Let's hope this amazing run continues for one more match! The team watched the semifinal match here in Starkville as Eric and Raven Klassen dismantled former world #1 Daniel Nestor and Zimonjic. Here is a video of the celebration of the team at match point!
Andrew Gets Married: It's about time! Andrew got married to Alicia on Saturday, January 4th at the Bigelow Chapel in Cambridge MA. It was a great few days of celebrations! The couple went on a honeymoon in the Dominican Republic for eight days and they are now back enjoying real life in their apartment in Cambridge. Below is a wedding shot and one of Andrew with teammates Mitty Arnold, Todd Meringoff and Adam Valkin at the reception party.