The Valparaiso University men’s tennis team split its squad on Friday to open the 2016 fall campaign. Four Crusaders opened action at the James Bonk Invitational, hosted by Duke in Cary, N.C. The remainder of the team stayed behind to compete in the Valpo Fall Invitational, which started on campus at the Valpo Tennis Complex and moved due to weather indoors to the Courts of NWI.
How It Happened – Duke
- Both Crusader doubles teams earned wins over the duo of Joshua Wardell and Stephen Madonia from Florida. Seniors Jeffrey Schorsch (Perrysburg, Ohio/Perrysburg) and Charlie Emhardt (Carmel, Ind./Carmel) teamed up for an 8-6 victory against the Gators before falling 8-5 to an Auburn duo which was playing its first match of the day.
- Later in doubles action, senior Dave Bacalla (Skokie, Ill./Niles North) and sophomore Chad Kissell (Latrobe, Pa./Greater Latrobe) defeated Wardell and Madonia, 8-2.
- Kissell earned Valpo’s lone singles win of the day, advancing to the quarterfinals of the White singles bracket with a 6-4, 7-5 victory over Radford’s Robin Calais.
How It Happened – Valpo
- All six Crusaders competing in Valpo advanced to the semifinals of singles play. Senior Kyle Dunn (Fond du Lac, Wis./Fond du Lac) downed WashU’s John Carswell (6-4, 6-1) while freshman Brandon Ancona (Belvidere, Ill./Rockford Christian) earned a 7-5, 6-2 win over Chicago State’s Christian Gonzalez in the ‘A’ singles bracket.
- In ‘B’ singles, junior Garrett Gardner (Poland, Ohio/Poland) posted a 6-3, 6-2 win over Cage Kingsmith of Eastern Illinois. Freshman Daniel Langston (Ponca City, Okla./Ponca City) recorded a 7-5, 6-4 victory against WashU’s Shaun Berman.
- Redshirt freshman Brian Pecyna (Glen Ellyn, Ill.) earned a 7-6(2), 6-3 victory over WashU’s Konrad Kozlowski in the ‘C’ singles bracket, while freshman Franklin Brozovich (Fort Gratiot, Mich./Port Huron Northern) downed Chicago State’s Gonzalo Martinez by a 6-3, 6-4 final.
- Ancona and Dunn teamed up to advance to the finals of the ‘A’ doubles bracket, beating a pair of teams from WashU by scores of 6-3 and 6-4. Pecyna and Brozovich earned a doubles win as well in ‘B’ doubles, recording a 6-2 victory over an Eastern Illinois duo.
Inside the Matches
- Emhardt and Schorsch extended their stranglehold on the top two spots on the Crusaders’ all-time doubles wins chart, winning their 87th and 83rd doubles matches, respectively.
- Bacalla’s win in doubles action was the 55th of his career, tying him for fifth-most in program history.
- Ancona, Brozovich, Langston and Pecyna all made their Crusader debuts on Friday.
Action continues from both Duke and Valparaiso on Saturday. The Valpo Fall Invitational is scheduled to conclude tomorrow, while the James Bonk Invitational will go through Sunday.