The Valparaiso University men’s tennis team competed on the first day of the Western Michigan Invitational on Saturday in Kalamazoo, Mich. The Crusaders played the University of Chicago in Round 1 of singles, Xavier in Round 2 of singles and Western Michigan in doubles as the event followed a hidden dual format.
How It Happened
- Junior Chad Kissell (Latrobe, Pa. / Greater Latrobe) enjoyed a perfect day of play at No. 1 singles. He nipped University of Chicago’s Erik Kerrigan 6-2, 7-5 in Round 1 before capturing a 7-5, 6-1 victory over Xavier’s Jack Dykema in Round 2.
- Sophomore Gabriel Carvajal (Pembroke Pines, Fla. / Broward Virtual School [Florida Atlantic]) also had a flawless day in singles play, topping University of Chicago’s Justin Lee 6-0, 6-2 before getting the best of Xavier’s Trent Smith in a three-set thriller – 3-6, 6-4, 10-8.
- Sophomore Daniel Langston (Ponca City, Okla. / Ponca City) dispatched Gabriel Araujo 6-0, 6-3 after an earlier 6-3, 7-5 win over Ninan Kumar.
- Redshirt sophomore Brian Pecyna (Glen Ellyn, Ill. / Homeschooled) rounded out a quartet of Crusaders with perfect days, going 2-0 on the day capped by a thrilling 7-6(4), 7-6(0) victory over Xavier.
- Senior Brandon Ancona (Belvidere, Ill. / Rockford Christian), freshman Kweisi Kenyatte (Detroit, Mich. / East English Village Preparatory) and senior Garrett Gardner (Poland, Ohio / Poland) all had wins over the Maroons but fell to the Musketeers.
- Sophomore Franklin Brozovich (Fort Gratiot, Mich. / Port Huron Northern) and freshman Nick Marino (Northbrook, Ill. / Glenbrook North) did the opposite, losing their Round 1 match against the University of Chicago before bouncing back with wins over Xavier.
- In doubles, Kenyatte and Gardner picked up an 8-4 victory over a Western Michigan duo at No. 1, Kissell and Pecyna prevailed in an 8-6 showdown with the Broncos at No. 2, and Marino and Ancona got the job done at No. 3 with an 8-4 victory. Western Michigan’s only doubles win came at No. 4, 8-5 over Brozovich and Carvajal.
The Crusaders will continue the Western Michigan Invitational on Sunday, the second and final day of the event.