The Valparaiso University men’s tennis team opened the 2018-2019 season on Friday as part of the eight-team River Forest Invitational, hosted at the River Forest Tennis Club and Oak Park Tennis Center. Four of Valpo’s top six singles players picked up first-round victories, while two of the top three Valpo doubles pairs have advanced to Saturday’s championship.
How It Happened
- Brandon Ancona (Belvidere, Ill. / Rockford Christian) got his junior season off to a victorious start, prevailing in his first-round singles match 6-1, 7-5 over Marquette’s Greg Anderson in the first singles flight.
- Brian Pecyna (Glen Ellyn, Ill. / Homeschooled) also started the year in winning fashion, rolling past Detroit Mercy’s Yevhen Sirous 6-0 in the first set before earning a narrow 7-6(8-6) win in Set 2 to nail down the victory in the second singles flight.
- Kweisi Kenyatte (Detroit, Mich. / East English Village Preparatory) battled his way to a three-set win in his first-round match at fourth singles. He bounced back from a 3-6 loss to NIU’s Bor Muzar in the first set with 6-4, 10-3 wins in the second and third sets to remain in the winners’ bracket.
- Gabriel Carvajal (Pembroke Pines, Fla. / Broward Virtual School [Florida Atlantic]) cruised to a win in the No. 5 singles flight, beating Eastern Illinois’ Braden Davis 6-0, 6-1.
- Valpo also had good success in doubles, led by the top combo of Ancona and Kenyatte, who rolled to a pair of 6-1 victories. They started their season by topping a team from Youngstown State before sustaining that success with a similar triumph over Detroit Mercy.
- Valpo’s other successful doubles combination came in the third flight, where Pecyna and Franklin Brozovich (Fort Gratiot, Mich. / Port Huron Northern) joined forces for a pair of wins. They battled their way to a 7-5 win over a Youngstown State combo in the first match before breezing past a UIC pairing 6-2 to move on to Saturday’s No. 3 doubles final.
Inside The Match
- Ancona garnered the 39th singles win over his career while picking up his 32nd and 33rd doubles wins.
- Pecyna obtained his 22nd career singles win after moving to 21 career doubles triumphs.
- Kenyatte gained his 21st career singles win after winning 20 matches as a freshman a year ago. His pair of doubles wins lifted him to 17 for his career.
- Carvajal started his second year at Valpo with his 17th singles victory since joining the program, while Brozovich hit the 20-win milestone in doubles.
Both singles and doubles play at the River Forest Invitational will continue on Saturday starting at 9 a.m. CT at River Forest Tennis Club and Oak Park Tennis Center.