The Wolfpacker

January 2017

The Wolfpacker: An Independent Magazine Covering NC State Sports

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80 ■ THE WOLFPACKER BY MATT CARTER N C State men's tennis head coach Jon Choboy has had overwhelmingly young rosters before, but it's been a while. "I haven't had this in a long a time," he admitted. "It's a pretty unique situation to have only one player in the junior or senior class." Other than senior Nick Horton, a main- stay in the Pack's lineup throughout his career, the rest of the nine-player roster consists of five sophomores and four fresh- men. And one of the sophomores, Georgiy Malyshev, is set to make his debut after having to sit out last season. Thus it is understandable that Choboy will reach for the silver linings where he can find them. "A couple of them are actually a little bit older," he noted. "They are not 19 or 18 years old. Georgiy is a little older, he's 22, and then the twin brothers [sophomores Igor and Ivan Saveljic] are both 21. They were in college over in Montenegro. "They are younger as far as ACC expe- rience, but not younger as far as overall experience." Having such a youthful roster in a league that sent seven teams to the NCAA Tour- nament last season, including defending national champion Virginia, is a daunting task. Which leads into Choboy's first goal for his team: establishing a chip on its col- lective shoulder. "It's an 'us against the world' mentality," Choboy said. "It's really letting the guys know, and it is true that when you are a young and inexperienced team, people feel they can push you around. Anybody that is going to come here isn't going to show you respect until you earn it. "For us, a big goal is to make sure we earn our respect and that whether we get beat or not people understand we're going to compete. We are going to be there, be a team together." The good news for Choboy is he does have an experienced leader in Horton, an all-conference honoree last year. He ended the season ranked No. 64 nationally in singles and began this year No. 39 in the preseason rankings. Horton's final match of the year last spring was a straight-set triumph over Thai- Son Kwiatkowski of Virginia, who was ranked No. 6 in the country and went on to be named the NCAA Championships' Most Outstanding Player for the Cavs. "He's going to hopefully play like he did ■ PREVIEW MEN'S TENNIS YOUTH IS SERVED With Just One Upperclassman, The Pack Will Rely On Freshmen And Sophomores This Season Senior Nick Horton went 7-3 in the fall and was listed as the nation's No. 39 singles player in the preseason rankings. PHOTO COURTESY NC STATE MEDIA RELATIONS

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