Standing tall next to each other, they communicated and moved in sync. Soendergaard and Peck have similar playing styles, both having strong serves and strong volleying capabilities at the net.
“He closes on the net really hard so it’s good for me when I hit a big serve that he’s all over the next shot,” Peck said.
This season, Peck has become a solid and fundamental player in the Tar Heel lineup, clinching multiple important matches this season. He typically plays on Court 4 and has a record of 3-1; however, he has played on Court 3 when there is a lineup change and has a 4-3 record from that spot.
On Friday afternoon, he unexpectedly moved up to Court 2 for the first time this season.
“I was surprised I played No. 2 today, because usually Ben (Sigouin) is playing No. 2,” Peck said. “I thought I managed my opponent really well today. I managed my serve well, and I got up on an early break so I kept the momentum going throughout the match.”
Peck has grown since he first stepped on UNC’s campus. During his first year, most of his wins occurred in the fall, while sophomore year, he played anywhere from Court 4 to Court 6.
Now ranked No. 104, the junior clinched the singles point for UNC as well with a 6-2, 6-2 victory in straight sets.
“He’s more confident,” Paul said. “He’s hitting his shots.”
Spectators at the Cone-Kenfield Tennis Center saw another unfamiliar face in the lineup. With Blumberg and Kiger out, Harrison saw the court for the second time this season in singles.
“I haven’t really picked up a racket in two weeks so I had to work out a little bit of the kinks there,” Harrison said. “It felt good being back out on the court. I just need a few more matches to put it all back together, but it was a lot of fun being out there again.”
In his first ACC appearance of his career, Harrison faced an uphill battle, which the junior ultimately lost. He fell 6-4 in the first set, but fought in the second. The Atlanta native climbed his way out of a 6-2 deficit but fell 7-5 in a tiebreaker.
Although Harrison was the only Tar Heel to lose on Friday, he couldn’t help but smile during interviews at how far he has come.
“I came in my freshman year as a walk-on,” Harrison said. “I’ve had the mentality every single day to work as hard as I can. After three years, that’s really paid off. If you would’ve told me I would be playing six singles my junior year when I was a freshman, I would’ve said, ‘You’re crazy.’”
The Tar Heels hope to continue their unblemished home record during their final home match of the season on Sunday against Notre Dame, which is when UNC will honor its lone senior, Boyden.
“Bo’s been one of my favorite guys on the team because of his mentality throughout his whole Carolina experience,” Peck said. “It’s sad to see him leave, because he’s been such a big part of the program with his success his sophomore and junior years. He’s really helped build the culture of our team and what we strive to do on a daily basis.”
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