MOREHEAD, Ky (WYMT) - The Morehead State men's tennis team will travel to the Chicago area for its Fall season opener. The Eagles are set to participate in the River Forest Invitational this weekend.
Morehead State returns five players from its 2012 squad, while two newcomers are expected to see their first collegiate action.
"I am really looking forward to seeing how we compete this weekend," ninth-year Head Coach Kevin Fulton said. "The fall is a time to get better individually and see what areas we need to focus on. I like our team. We have several key veterans back to go along with some very talented newcomers."
The event includes Belmont, Butler, Northern Kentucky, Saint Louis, Illinois-Chicago, Valparaiso and Youngstown State. Matches will be played on clay courts.
"Clay courts are a different surface than our guys are used to," Fulton added. "But, we chose this tournament because it makes our players work harder to earn points, and that is the type of play we'll mainly see in the spring in the Ohio Valley Conference."
Seniors David Clifford and Ji Hoon Heo will join sophomore returnees Nick Mercer, Giovanni Samaha and Enrique Samudio.
Samaha notched an 11-9 mark in singles last year, including a 9-6 record in the spring at No. 3. Heo played primarily at No. 1 last year and collected 12 singles victories. Clifford also tallied 12 singles victories and was 7-6 at No. 4 singles. Mercer fashioned a 4-4 singles mark at No. 5 in OVC play.
The quintet will be joined by freshmen Gabriel Ruiz and Jack Swindells.
"Both these freshmen can be outstanding players," Fulton said. "Jack is already competing at an extremely high level, and Gabriel is almost there. He just needs to get used to playing on hard courts more, and he'll be a quality player in our conference."