The Emporia State tennis teams invited alumni tennis team members back to campus for a game on Saturday. Five alumni made the trip back to their alma mater.
“It was really good to have the alumni here, and it was a lot of fun to get the chance to play with the girls and mix things up for a change,” said Keenan Smith, freshman undecided major.
The alumni team consisted of George Milton, former coach, John Cayton, current head coach, Tyler Zappia, Eric Sparks and Jose Vaca. They played a round-robin mixed doubles tournament. The winners of the tournament were senior Alex Crow and Smith, who went 3-0 on the day.
“It was a really cold day to play – not a day I would have chosen – but it turned out to be a lot of fun,” said Kenton Hallowell, freshman undecided major. “We were supposed to have a really good turnout of alumni, but due to the weather, not as many came as expected, but it was still fun.
Hallowell said the day was also enjoyable because the men and women were randomly paired.
“We haven’t had the chance to play with them at all this season,” Hallowell said. “It was a really good bonding experience for the whole team and I think we are more unified now as a whole.”
Collin Conner, freshman pre-physical therapy major, said the mixed doubles match was entertaining.
“We didn’t have to take it completely seriously, so it was more fun than competitive,” Conner said.
After the games were over, the team and alumni went to George Melvins’ house for a KFC chicken dinner, to play some games and to bond. Melvin is a sponsor for the tennis team and a former coach for ESU.
“It was a nice change of pace from the daily grind,” said Andrew Davids, sophomore secondary education major. “It was a really good and fun way to end a good fall season.”
The men’s tennis team ended their fall season with a record of 4-2, and the women ended with a record of 5-0. The teams will start their spring season on Feb. 27 against Ottawa University at home.