Valparaiso wrapped up its spring trip on Wednesday with its third straight victory, defeating South Dakota State 6-1 at the Martin Tennis Complex in Winter Park, Fla. The Crusaders finished their trip to the Sunshine State 3-1 and have now won five of their last seven matches overall.
“This was a very solid win for us today,” head coach Jim Daugherty said. “We played solid all day. Each day I see our team improving and continuing to play with more and more confidence. We look to carry this momentum into conference play.”
The Crusaders started the match against the Jackrabbits as they did the previous two days, sweeping the doubles point. Jose Gaspar (Sao Paulo, Brazil/CEAD H.S.) and Eric Honert (Arvada, Colo./Ralston Valley H.S.) teamed for an 8-6 victory over Chris Baron and Justin Pyle at the top of the lineup. Chris Baum (Charlotte, N.C./Providence H.S.) and Adam Whitmer (Shipshewana, Ind./Westview H.S.) added an 8-3 triumph over Jamie Dash and Dominic Rossetto at the second spot while Kevin DeHerrera (Littleton, Colo./Chatfield H.S.) and Kyle Stump (Plymouth, Ind./Plymouth H.S.) added an 8-5 win over Carl Lundberg and James Thorp at third doubles.
Valpo clinched the match victory with three straight singles wins. The Crusaders took a 2-0 advantage at number two singles when Rossetto retired with Baum leading the match 3-0 in the first set. Gaspar added a 6-2, 6-1 win at the top of the lineup before Honert secured the contest by defeating Baron 6-3, 6-2 at number four.
DeHerrera added a three sets victory at third singles, defeating Dash 6-0, 3-6, 6-4 while Siddarth Mehta (South Bend, Ind./Clay H.S.) added a win at the fifth spot, coming from behind to down Thorp 2-6, 7-5, 10-6 in a match tie-break. South Dakota State (4-3) won its lone match at sixth singles as Lundberg defeated Whitmer 6-3, 7-6 (7).
Valparaiso (5-6) will have 10 days off before returning to action on Saturday, March 19 to open Horizon League play, hosting Green Bay. First serve is set for 2 p.m. at the Northwest Athletic Club.