A valiant effort by the Valparaiso University men’s tennis team came up shy on Thursday at West Hills Athletic Club in Kalamazoo, Mich. as host Western Michigan held on for a 4-3 victory. Valpo nearly came from behind to win the match, but the Broncos took a key three-set showdown at first singles to nail down the victory.
How It Happened
- Valpo (6-3) garnered one victory in doubles as Brian Pecyna (Glen Ellyn, Ill. / Homeschooled) and Chad Kissell (Latrobe, Pa. / Greater Latrobe) teamed up for a 6-4 triumph over Lenhard Haupt and Jack Randall at No. 2. That wasn’t enough to swing the doubles point in Valpo’s favor, however, as the Broncos won on the two remaining courts.
- The first doubles match featured high drama as Jannik Opitz and Kennosuke Nouchi escaped with a narrow 7-6 victory by topping Brandon Ancona (Belvidere, Ill. / Rockford Christian) and Kweisi Kenyatte (Detroit, Mich. / East English Village Preparatory) 9-7 in the tiebreaker. That secured an important doubles point for the hosts.
- Wins at the fifth and sixth singles spots allowed Western Michigan (8-6) to build up a commanding 3-0 lead in the team score, but that’s when Valpo hit the comeback trail.
- The next match to finish was at No. 3 singles, where Kenyatte picked up a 7-6(3), 6-3 win over Haupt.
- The other three matches went three sets. At fourth singles, Pecyna gained a 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 win over Jack Randall to make the team score 3-2. However, Opitz edged Kissell 6-7(3), 6-2, 7-5 at first singles to nail down the team win.
- Ancona rebounded from dropping the first set to win 4-6, 7-6(4), 6-4 over Matej Svjetlicic at No. 2.
Inside the Match
- Kissell now has 66 career doubles wins, one away from breaking into the Top 5 in program history.
- Kenyatte is 7-1 on the spring and has 12 wins for the season.
- Pecyna is up to 14 wins for the season, while Ancona maintained his team lead by registering his 15th singles victory.
The spring trip is next on the docket for Valpo men’s tennis as the team will play five matches in Orlando, Fla. The first match of that stretch will take place on Monday against Hampton.