Tennessee/Virginia Indoor Championship Quotes

Feb. 17, 2010


Head Coach Sam Winterbotham
Opening Statement
"We put ourselves in really good position to win the match, which was excellent. We had a small window of opportunity in singles to really take the crowd out of the match, and we did not seize that opportunity. We really needed to play well to do that, and to Virginia's credit, they played like their backs were against the wall. They knew the start would be critical to them.

They looked like the team that wanted to win all six first sets. We did not have the same urgency.

On crowds: "The thing about crowds is that if you let them get momentum, they're effective. We learned that the hard way today. But it's a lesson these guys understand and need to do their best to take the crowd out of the match. If the crowd's not being loud when it's packed, there's a lot of angst and nervousness that you can actually use to your advantage.

We weren't able to do that today, and you have to credit Virginia's players. They played great. They jumped on us, and we were never able to get back on level ground.

On the slow start:
"Rhyne won the first set, but we lost the other five first sets. We needed to win more first sets. After we did lose the first set, we just went down too quickly in the second sets on a couple of courts. That kills your chances to really give people like Boris time to turn the match around on their courts.

"I'm extremely proud of what these guys are doing. We're doing great things. They're growing from this experience, and we'll be better because of it. Still, no one on our team likes losing."

Junior Boris Conkic
Opening statement:

"I think we played really good in every match. We started well in doubles every day. I thought we played great doubles against Virginia. We just couldn't carry the momentum into singles. We lost a lot of first sets, and that really hurt us. We couldn't really come back, but I trust this team. I know we'll be back, and we'll play better next time in these kinds of situations."



On Virginia's home crowd:
"I don't think it bothered us because they had the same crowd in doubles, and we really dominated those matches on one and two. I think when the felt they could win, the crowd really got a little more into it. It maybe affected us a little bit. Of course, it's easier to play with 1,500 people behind you. But that's going to happen in Florida and Georgia and a lot of places. We just have to handle it better next time.

"We beat a lot of good teams. This tournament is going to help us throughout the season."

On freshmen Rhyne Williams and Tennys Sandgren:
"I thought they handled it pretty well for freshmen. It's not easy. College tennis is something special. It you, not playing for yourself, it's playing for the team. Sometimes it takes players a couple matches. For some players, it takes a year or two to understand the atmosphere.

I thought, over all, they handled it well. Those players are good. They're opponents are good.

On Unfinished Match with Sanam Singh "The first time I played him on the same court in Virginia two falls ago, and I had to retire due to injury. The second time, I lost to him in the semifinals in Chicago. I lost very easy against him."

"I thought I came out with a better game plan today. I had a lot of opportunities in the first set. I was up 4-1, 4-2 break point. I just could not close it out. I was two breaks down in the second set, and I fought back. I thought I had a good chance of winning the whole match after winning the second set.

On Rallying in the Second Set "I just started to stick to the game plan. I also realized that we were going down on a few courts, and it just gave me some energy that you can't really feel except in college tennis. It just happens when you have six guys playing next to each other."



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