By Bill Alden
Over the course of this spring, the Princeton Day School boys’ tennis team is going to be tested early and often.
PDS is facing a gauntlet of tough foes in regular season action, featuring a schedule packed with formidable prep and public school opponents. As for postseason play, the Panthers will be competing in the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association (NJSIAA) tournament for the first time in addition to their annual tradition of taking part in the state Prep B tourney and the Mercer County Tournament (MCT).
For PDS head coach Michael Augsberger, facing challenges is the key to making progress.
“I tell them it is really important for me to be playing the best because it means that we are trying to become the best tennis players that we can be and not just win matches,” said Augsberger. “That is impotent but it is more important to improve and to test yourself and your mettle. The challenge with that is that you have to try to keep spirits up.”
The chance to test their mettle in the NJSIAA competition is a big motivation for the PDS players.
“The guys are really excited, I think part of it is the success, ending on a high note last year and getting excited about it,” said Augsberger, whose team topped Peddie 5-0 last week to improve to 2-3 and hosts Haddonfield on April 20 before starting play in the MCT on April 25.
“Also I think it is entering the states. They see in the fall what the girls could do (winning a sectional title) and they are really excited about it. We are really happy to be a part of it. They really understand that this is a neat opportunity that no one else in school history has had.”
At first singles, junior Joshua Chu is getting a boost this spring from having the opportunity to spend two weeks training in Spain prior to the season. more