After a winning start to the spring trip on Sunday, the Valparaiso University men’s tennis team doubled its success on Monday in Florida. The Crusaders earned two wins, downing Mount Saint Mary’s 7-0 in the morning match at Lake Cane before capturing a 6-1 victory over Grand Valley State at the USTA Center in Orlando.
How It Happened – Mount Saint Mary’s
- Dave Bacalla (Skokie, Ill. / Niles North) returned to the lineup for the Crusaders and teamed with Jeffrey Schorsch (Perrysburg, Ohio / Perrysburg) at No. 1 doubles. That duo topped Mateo DeSomocurcio and Louis Tonon 6-2, before Garrett Gardner (Poland, Ohio / Poland) and Kyle Dunn (Fond du Lac, Wis. / Fond du Lac) latched down the doubles point by besting Zachary Burau and Jean Armstrong 6-2 at No. 2.
- The two teams played out No. 3 doubles – a match between Valpo’s Daniel Langston (Ponca City, Okla. / Ponca City) and Franklin Brozovich (Fort Gratiot, Mich. / Port Huron Northern) and Mount Saint Mary’s Brandon Wortkotter and Darren Mast. The Valpo duo got the job done, eking out a 7-6 triumph.
- When singles got underway, the Crusaders continued their success. Charlie Emhardt (Carmel, Ind. / Carmel) bounced back from a Sunday defeat in a big way, steamrolling Tonon 6-0, 6-1 in the first match to finish.
- Brozovich cracked the lineup at No. 5 singles and bounced Burau 6-0, 6-1.
- The win that clinched the match for the Crusaders came at No. 4 singles, as Brandon Ancona (Belvidere, Ill. / Rockford Christian) topped Peter Landis 6-1, 6-1.
- Schorsch turned in another solid showing at No. 1 singles, defeating DeSomocurcio 6-2, 6-4.
- Brian Pecyna (Glen Ellyn, Ill. / Homeschooled) got the nod at No. 6 singles and won the closest set of the match, 7-5 over Wortkotter before nailing down the victory with a 6-2 Set 1 win.
How It Happened – Grand Valley State
- The Crusaders made another tweak to their doubles alignment, trying Emhardt and Kissell at No. 1 while placing Schorsch and Gardner at No. 2. This was the first time Schorsch had played No. 2 doubles this season.
- The No. 2 doubles team was the first to finish, with Valpo winning 6-2. The new No. 1 duo also took care of business, winning 7-5. The Crusaders penciled Pecyna and Ancona into the lineup as the No. 3 doubles tandem and they responded with a 6-4 win.
- Singles play was very competitive, with three of the six matches taking three sets to decide. Valpo’s most lopsided win of the day came at No. 3, where Gardner dispatched the opposition in straight sets, 6-2, 6-2.
- Pecyna played No. 5 singles and had little trouble, prevailing 6-4, 6-1. The other match that needed only two sets to decide was No. 6, where Brozovich snagged a 6-3, 6-2 win.
- With Schorsch, Kissell and Emhardt all sitting out singles competition, the Crusaders played Bacalla at No. 1. He dropped the first set 6-3, but settled in to take the match with 6-4, 6-2 wins in the final two sets.
- Langston, playing No. 4 singles, also recovered from a Set 1 setback to win the match. He dropped the opening set 6-2, but then rallied for 7-6 (8-6) and 10-6 victories.
- The only Laker victory came at No. 2, as Dunn fell 6-3, 3-6, 10-6.
Inside the Matches
- The Crusaders have raced to 10 wins in their first 11 matches and own a nine-match winning streak
- Schorsch now has 100 career doubles wins, becoming the second player in program history to achieve that feat. The first was Schorsch’s most frequent doubles partner, Emhardt.
- Schorsch is on the verge of another milestone, as he’s one singles win away from hitting the century mark. He will become the first player in program history to reach that precipice. He has rapped off nine straight wins to start the spring season.
- Brozovich and Langston improved to 2-0 as a team after playing together for the first time on Feb. 17 against Eastern Illinois.
- The second match saw the Crusaders bust out a brand new duo, as Ancona and Pecyna played doubles together for the first time in a match situation.
- Dunn’s loss to Grand Valley State caused his six-match winning streak to screech to a halt.
The Crusaders will resume activity in Florida on Wednesday as they visit St. Leo. The match is slated to begin at 2 p.m. CT.