As singles play in the main draw of the ITA Regionals opened Friday, the Crusaders had a record five representatives thanks to a pair of early-morning wins from junior Kyle Dunn (Fond du Lac, Wis./Fond du Lac) and freshman Chad Kissell (Latrobe, Pa./Greater Latrobe).
Dunn rallied for a 4-6, 6-0, 6-2 victory versus Toledo's Vince Anzalone to move into the 64-player field. Kissell erased any semblance of home-court advantage in his match against Notre Dame's Daniel Rayl. The Crusader freshman dominated the two-time Indiana state singles champion, 6-1, 6-2 to join Dunn, Jeffrey Schorsch (Perrysburg, Ohio/Perrysburg), Dave Bacalla (Skokie, Ill./Niles North), and Charlie Emhardt (Carmel, Ind./Carmel) in the main draw.
Dunn later fell 6-3, 6-4 to Northwestern's Alp Horoz while Kissell dropped a 6-2, 6-1 tilt to Leopold Gomez Islinger of Green Bay.
The 119th-ranked Schorsch rolled to a 6-4, 6-4 triumph over Northern Illinois' Tom Hjertonsson in his first match of the event. Schorsch advances to face Wisconsin's Alexander Kokorev Saturday at 10:30 am CT.
Western Michigan's Matej Svjetlicic defeated Bacalla, 6-2, 6-1, in their Round of 64 matchup.
Emhardt and Notre Dame's Eddy Covalschi engaged in a long-winded affair before Covalschi emerged with a 5-7, 7-6 (4), 7-6 (6) win.
The Crusaders went 2-3 in the opening round of doubles play.
Schorsch/Emhardt, the fourth seed in the tournament, coasted to an 8-4 victory versus Green Bay's Rowan Isaaks/Miles McDowell. They'll take on Detroit's Patryk Koscielski/Nicholas Solarewicz Saturday evening at a time to be determined.
Garrett Gardner (Poland, Ohio/Poland) and Lucas Waak (Manitowoc, Wis./Roncalli) gutted out an 8-6 win over Horizon League foes Andre Mick and Joe VanMeter of Cleveland State. The Crusader duo will now challenge the second-ranked Alex Lawson/Quentin Monaghan of Notre Dame on Saturday evening.
Dunn and Kissell fell 8-2 to Wisconsin's Josef Dodridge/Lamar Remy while Ohio State's Chris Diaz and Harkko Pollanen charged past Brian Hickey (Western Springs, Ill./Fenwick) and Michael Savaglio (Kenosha, Wis./Mary D. Bradford), 8-1.
Toledo's Vince Anzalone and Luka Vitosevic doubled up Bacalla and Danny Oakes (Elburn, Ill./Saint Charles North), 8-4, in their Round of 32 match.
Live scoring is available for the entirety of the ITA Midwest Regionals. The link is posted at ValpoAthletics.com.