Feb. 6, 2013
In only his second season on the University of Tennessee tennis team, Hunter Reese has taken no time to earn his way towards the top of the lineup.
Reese has started at No. 2 singles so far this year and is currently undefeated at 11-0. Only one of those matches has taken him into a third set. His latest victory came against North Carolina's 58th-ranked Nelson Vick 6-1, 6-4.
The self- proclaimed "best Ping Pong player" and the Vols travel to Durham, N.C., to take on the Duke Blue Devils Friday in a 6 p.m. ET match.
Q: As a sophomore, what are your expectations playing high in the lineup? A: I want to help the team the best I can.
Q: Performance wise, you're doing pretty well this season. What makes this year different from last year for you? How do you think you've improved? A: Experience. We've all gotten a lot better throughout the year. More experience, for me, that's what's made a huge difference.
Q: Last year, you considered yourself the best Ping Pong player on the team. Do you still believe that's true? A: Yeah.
Q: And why is that? A: Oh, it's just a fact.
(No actual proof has been provided to prove if Reese is in fact the best Ping Pong player.)
Q: Brandon Fickey considers you a terrible singer from last year's Serve and Volley. It's time for your revenge. Give us some good dirt on Fickey. A: Man, I have to think about this one. Well, he folds his dirty clothes on the road. That's kind of weird, I thought. Let's see, terrible singer. That's just mean. That's not true at all. I'm a great singer. I don't know. He folds his dirty clothes. He's a weirdo.
Q: What would you say your favorite part about playing doubles with Brandon Fickey? A: There's a lot. It's so easy to get on a roll with him. We both return well and it's fun.
Q: Of the returning players, who do you think has improved the most since last season? A: I'd say Jarryd. He's gotten a lot better. He's serving really well. His forehand has gotten a lot better and he plays his game really well. He kind of just accepts who he is and goes out and gets it done.
Q: How is your routine different on the road than it is at home? A: For me, I have to get everything ready the night before. Whereas, if we're here, I can bring everything in the day of and get it organized and stuff. Nothing changes for me on the court though. I still do everything the same.
Q: Besides the Wake Forest Invitational earlier this year, this is your first time actually playing against Wake Forest. What do you think going into a match against a team or person you've never played? Is there any particular strategies or anything different that you do?
A: No, I don't do anything different. I've played most of the guys on the team either through juniors or at that Wake Forest tournament at the beginning of the year. I played four of them. So, we'll see, but nothing changes.