CHATTANOOGA, TN (GoMocs.com)---The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga men's tennis team starts its 2015 spring schedule this weekend. The Mocs open up at Middle Tennessee on Saturday and visit No. 6 North Carolina on Monday in nonconference action.
First serve for Saturday's match against the Blue Raiders is 11:00 a.m. (E.S.T.) at Nashboro Village in Nashville, Tenn. A link for live scoring is available on the men's tennis schedule page on GoMocs.com.
Chattanooga is 11-17 all-time against MTSU, including a 7-0 loss to the 50th ranked Blue Raiders on Jan. 18 last season. Chattanooga is trying to snap a 13-match slide in the series, going for its first win over MTSU since 1988.
The Mocs return four of its top six players from 2014. Junior Gino Delavalle led the team with a 6-2 record in the fall. He was 9-9 in dual matches last season, including a 7-7 mark at No. 4. Other returning juniors are John Peacey and Luke Saunders. Junior Nick Wingord joined the team in the fall and is pushing for a spot in the top of the lineup.
Sophomore Lucas Plesky will take the court for the first time this weekend. He sat out the last two semesters, fulfilling his year in residency, and will also make a push at the top of the lineup. Freshmen Mason Grear and Michael Birnbaum are two others who gained experience during the fall season and could earn time in the spring.
The Tar Heels are No. 6 in the first ITA spring team rankings. Individually, sophomore Brayden Schnur is No. 2 in the nation in singles, while sophomore Ronnie Schneider is No. 27.
UTC is looking for its first win in four tries against Carolina. The Mocs dropped their last meeting in Chapel Hill (7-0) on Feb. 24, 2013.
First serve against UNC is set for 10:00 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 19. A link for live scoring is available on the men's tennis schedule page on GoMocs.com.
Chattanooga head coach Carlos Garcia is entering his 14th season as head coach of the men's tennis team. He spent two years (1999-00) as an assistant coach at UNC.