The Fordham Men’s Tennis Preview


Men’s Tennis will look to improve under new head coach David Slater. (Courtesy of Fordham Athletics)

Amidst all the craziness of the fall at Fordham, there is an oasis to watch a sport that is both therapeutic and calm. Fordham Men’s Tennis returns for the 2022-23 season following a losing campaign that culminated with a 6-10 record. The Rams will look to rebound and improve with an older, more experienced team to contend for the Atlantic 10 title.

David Slater will take the reins as the head coach of the men’s tennis team and look to improve upon last season. Slater comes with a successful track record as a player, helping Marist College win back-to-back Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference championships in 2002 and 2003. Following his playing days, Slater led a successful career as a tennis professional at multiple clubs in the Metropolitan area.

Slater inherits a group of five returning players: Seniors Toi Kobayashi and Giorgio Soemarno, juniors Rhett Bailey and Nicholas Kanazirev and sophomore Aaron Ventura have elected to stay at Fordham. 

Kobayashi was the most successful Ram last year based on singles records going 9-4 overall, 7-4 in duals and 2-0 in tours. Entering his senior season at Rose Hill, Kobayashi will look to lead the Rams in their first season under Slater’s guidance.

Bailey will look to improve for the Rams in his junior season. Last year, he went 4-1 in singles play with his opponents winning no more than three games in three of his four wins. He allowed opponents to win over three games once, in a 7-5 second set slugfest against Wagner.

Kanazirev and Soemarno won four games a piece last year in singles, both under .500, and will look to rebound on their records and improve Fordham’s win total. Also keep an eye out for Aaron Ventura to improve following his 1-4 singles record in his freshman season.

Last year, the Rams season got off to a fast 2-0 start in team to team matches, defeating Wagner 7-0 and Adelphi 5-2. In the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) regionals, the Rams had one doubles duo, Kobayashi and then-senior Jofre Segarra defeat a duo from St. Francis Brooklyn 8-7. 

Fordham tail-spinned once the calendar turned to 2022, going 2-9 from January into early April. Fordham won its final two matches against Lafayette College and College of the Holy Cross before getting shut out against Duquesne University in the A-10 tournament.