Valparaiso rallied after dropping the opening doubles point to pick up its first victory of the 2010 spring season on Friday evening, defeating Dayton 5-2 at the West Hills Athletic Club in Kalamazoo, Mich.
“I was very proud of our guys tonight,” head coach Jim Daugherty said. “They battled until the very end of their matches.”
Dayton (1-3) opened the match taking two of the three doubles contests to take an early 1-0 lead. Joe West and Matt Sherman topped Sidderth Mehta (South Bend, Ind./Clay H.S.) and Michael Woodson (Raleigh, N.C./Ravenscroft H.S.) 8-2 at number three doubles before Adam Whitmer (Shipshewana, Ind./Westview H.S.) and Chris Baum (Charlotte, N.C./Providence H.S.) defeated Bryce Warnock and Robbie McCallum 8-5 at the second spot. The Flyers triumphed in the decisive one doubles match 8-6 though to take the point as Austin Wiegand and Robert Salcedo downed Tom Litscher (Eau Claire, Wis./Memorial H.S.) and Kevin DeHerrera (Littleton, Colo./Chatfield H.S.) 8-6.
The Crusaders began their comeback at the top of the singles lineup as Whitmer cruised to a 6-1, 6-2 victory over Salcedo to tie the score at one.
“That is the best match I have seen Adam play,” Daugherty commented. “He’s really playing well right now.”
Litscher put the Crusaders on top with his win at third singles when Warnock retired in the second set. Litscher had a 6-3, 4-1 lead at the time of the retirement. Baum added to the lead with his first collegiate win at the fourth spot, downing Sherman in three sets 6-3, 4-6, 6-2. McCallum pulled the Flyers within 3-2 with a three set win over Kyle Stump (Plymouth, Ind./Plymouth H.S.) at number two singles, posting a tight 6-4, 4-6, 6-3 victory.
Mehta clinched the match for the Crusaders with a come-from-behind three set win over West at the sixth spot, 0-6, 6-4, 6-3. DeHerrera capped the match with his team-leading fourth singles victory of the year, 6-7 (4), 7-6 (4), 6-4 against Wiegand.
Valparaiso (1-1) will remain in Kalamazoo on Saturday afternoon to face #75 Western Michigan in a 4:30 p.m. CST contest.