Tennis teams dealing with changes


Adam Tumino | The Daily Eastern News

Eastern’s Director of Men’s and Women’s Tennis Chris Tolson (middle) prepares the teams for practice Oct. 8 at the Darling Courts.

Adam Tumino, Editor-in-Chief

The Eastern men’s and women’s tennis teams missed out on a conference season in Spring 2020, and are missing out on fall competition as well.

Both teams have been able to take advantage of practice time this semester and Chris Tolson, Director of Men’s and Women’s Tennis, said that he was pleased with how the athletes have been handling the new situations this semester.

“Just watching them get out here and hit and seeing their attitudes, everybody has a great attitude. It’s been really positive,” he said. “It’s definitely been an adjustment for all of us, going through the different procedures we need to go through every single day, but the kids have been positive, and we’re getting a lot of work done. We’re looking good growth wise toward the spring.”

Joining Tolson on the coaching staff this season is Lilly Kimbell, who was hired as an assistant in September to help Tolson work with a large roster.

Kimbell served as a graduate assistant for two years at the University of Georgia and her job at Eastern is her first coaching job at the collegiate level.

Tolson said that she has been a nice fit with the program so far.

“Definitely it’s been tough to start with the big roster and things like that, but Lilly’s been great,” he said. “She has a great attitude. We’ve both been on the same page as far as looking to see where we need to take the team growth wise and get the team ready for spring.”

Although there are no competitions scheduled for the men’s and women’s tennis teams this semester, Tolson said they are still trying to replicate the experience in practices.

“Right now we’re starting to focus on playing some matches, team matches just between ourselves, some intrasquad games and things like that so they can get some match experience, because that’s the biggest thing heading into spring is making sure all our players are ready to compete.”

The women’s tennis team is coming off limited action in the spring where they went 5-8. They had lost their last six matches after a 5-2 start.

The men’s team got off to an even hotter start in the spring, going 7-1 in their first eight matches before dropping their last seven in a row before the remainder of the season was canceled.

There are also four freshmen that are new to the tennis program, three on the women’s side and one for the men’s team.


Adam Tumino can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]