The Valparaiso University men’s tennis team upped its record to 4-1 in Summit League action on Friday, rattling off its fourth straight win by beating South Dakota State 5-2 at Match Point Tennis Club in Griffith. The Crusaders won on four of the six singles courts and two of the three doubles courts.
How It Happened
- Chad Kissell (Latrobe, Pa. / Greater Latrobe) and Brandon Ancona (Belvidere, Ill. / Rockford Christian) moved back to the top doubles position and cruised to a 6-2 win over Marco Paulo Castro and Elliot Ward.
- The Jackrabbits (0-15, 0-2) were victorious at No. 2 doubles, where Aidan DeBoer and Emerson Styles topped Gabriel Carvajal (Pembroke Pines, Fla. / Broward Virtual School [Florida Atlantic]) and Daniel Langston (Ponca City, Okla. / Ponca City) 6-1.
- The doubles point hinged on the No. 3 match, where Franklin Brozovich (Fort Gratiot, Mich. / Port Huron Northern) and Brian Pecyna (Glen Ellyn, Ill. / Homeschooled) edged Alexander Reinke and Carlos Martinez 7-5.
- Langston continued his recent success by rolling past Henrique Stemmer 6-1, 6-0 at No. 5. Ancona put the Crusaders (7-10, 4-1) on the doorstep of the victory by building the lead to 3-0 with his 6-2, 6-1 triumph over Reinke at No. 2.
- The Crusaders nailed down the win with the victory at No. 4 as Garrett Gardner (Poland, Ohio / Poland) downed Castro in straight sets – 6-4, 6-2.
- Brozovich was on the wrong end of a 6-4, 6-4 match with Ward at No. 6, while Carvajal moved up to the No. 3 singles spot and suffered his first setback in Summit League play, losing 6-4, 2-6, 10-4 on a third set tiebreak in the final match to finish.
- Kissell’s match at the top singles position also went to a third set tiebreak, with Kissell topping Styles 6-3, 5-7, 10-5.
Inside The Match
- The Crusaders came away with the win despite playing without Kweisi Kenyatte, the team leader in singles wins with 18.
- Langston has won six straight singles matches and has his mark up to 12-9 this season. He owns the longest winning streak on the team. Gardner has strung together four straight singles wins.
- Kissell picked up his 59th doubles win as a Crusader. That number ranks sixth in program history. He needs four more to enter the Top 5. Kissell now has 63 singles wins, a total that ranks eighth in program history.
- Gardner’s singles win was the 72nd of his career, which sits in fifth in Valpo history.
- Carvajal made his No. 3 debut, playing at a higher spot in the lineup due to Kenyatte’s absence.
The Crusaders will continue Summit League play next week as they visit league-leading Drake for a 5 p.m. match on Saturday, April 14 in Des Moines, Iowa.