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Tennis competes on road in GLVC

Posted on 04.16.2014

Both the University of Indianapolis men’s and women’s tennis teams wrapped up regular season action over the weekend, competing at Lewis University on Friday, April 11, and on Saturday, April 12, at Saint Joseph’s College.

The men’s team claimed both competitions over the weekend, winning 6-3 on the first day and 5-2 on the second. The women’s team split their weekend, however, losing the first day, 6-3. The team rebounded on the second day, winning a shutout victory 8-0.

For the women, according to sophomore Allie Smith, the match against Lewis was a big focus.

“I wanted to beat Lewis on Friday. But for the team, we want to win conference, because we think we have a really good shot,” Smith said.

The men’s and women’s tennis teams both came away with victories against the Bellarmine University Knights on Friday, April 4. Both squads improved their winning streaks, as the men grabbed their fifth straight victory,  and the women attained their sixth.

The men’s team defeated the Knights 8-1, taking wins in the No. 1 and No. 3 doubles matches, as well as in all the singles matches throughout the day. The only loss was in the No. 2 doubles, as sophomore Fausto Cordova and freshman Marco Torres were defeated 8-2. Freshmen Nico Kastunowicz and Fernando Taricano, sophomores Ryan Frankel and Luke Hubert, Cordova and Torres each grabbed victories in their singles matches.

After their victories, Hubert, Kastunowicz, Frankel and Cordova each reached double-digit wins in singles matches on the season and helped the Greyhounds achieve a 4-0 record in conference play (the first time the Greyhounds have won four conference matches since 2008-09).

Senior Caleb Fellers attributed much of the team’s success to hard work in the offseason and extra time dedicated to weight training and practice. Fellers also gave credit to strong singles play from many of the younger team members.

“Fernando [Taricano] has been really good. Marco [Torres] has been solid, and Luke [Hubert] hasn’t lost a singles match,” Fellers said. “I think we are more confident than we were last year. Everything has been clicking as we go along, especially in the last few matches.”

The women’s team defeated the Knights 7-2 on Friday. Sophomore Macey Speer and freshman Selenay Heper lost in No. 2 doubles, and freshman Maria Mendes came up short in No. 2 singles. But senior Taylor Eckert, Smith, Heper, Speer and junior Brooke Boyts each clinched victories in their respective singles matches.

Eckert, Heper, Smith and Speer each had double-digit victories in singles on the season, following their win over the Knights. With their victories against Bellarmine, the women improved their singles record to 53-24, passing the previous season’s mark of 50-23.

Smith also attributed the women’s recent success to dedication. She said the team has been putting in more than 25 hours per week on practice, weight training and matches.

“I think this year we have been a lot more prepared and know what to expect,” Smith said. “Especially last year, [with] me being a freshman, I didn’t know what the competition would be like. Now I know that, playing the No. 1 spot, everyone is going to be good.”

Looking ahead on the men’s side, according to Fellers, the team is holding high hopes for a bid in nationals, as opposed to other seasons, when the team was just looking to make conference.

“The team we’re looking forward to meeting is Drury [University],” Fellers said. “They are always good, and we feel like we will have a good opportunity when we meet them.”

The Greyhounds will be back in action in the Great Lakes Valley Conference Championship Tournament April 18-20 in St. Louis, Mo.

 

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