St. Louis, Missouri – Four Wittenberg men's tennis players made the trek to St. Louis, Missouri, last weekend for the 2018 Division III ITA Central Regional Championships, hosted by Washington University (MO). Highlighting the weekend for the Tigers was the senior duo of Martin Mora and Luke Minard advancing to the semifinal round in the Men's Open Doubles Consolation Bracket.
Who Stood Out
After dropping a tough 8-6 decision against the Denison duo of Brown/Burstein in the opening round of the Men's Open Doubles Championship Bracket, Mora and Minard transitioned into the consolation bracket where thye proceeded to reel off three-straight victories. They opened play in the consolation bracket with an 8-5 win over the Hope team of Kiley/Smiley, before advancing to the semis with a pair of benchmark wins over Augustana's Alex/Sugumaran, 8-4, and Kenyon's Barrett/Wessel by an 8-3 margin. Mora and Minard were ultimately knocked out of contention in the semifinal round after dropping a narrow 8-6 decision against the Case duo of Boyette/Hsieh.
The Tigers also had a pair of individual players competing in the ITA Open Singles Championship, including 27th-ranked Mora and freshman Gavin Tay. Mora was upset in the opening round by Case's Sam Concannon by a 6-3, 7-6 margin, while Tay also dropped his opening-round match against ninth-seeded Vlad Rotnov from Denison by a scoreline of 6-1, 6-0. Both players bounced back in the opening round of the consolation bracket, with Mora defeating Augustana's Peter Alex 6-2, 6-2, and Tay knocking off Augustana's Guilherme Calixto, 6-1, 3-6, 1-0. After both earned a bye into the third round of the consolation bracket, Mora was knocked off by DePauw's William Louiselle, 6-3, 6-2, and Tay suffered a 6-2, 6-3 setback against Siddharth Rajupet from Case.
In addition, Minard and freshman Joe Patton also competed in the Men's UTR Open Singles competition in St. Louis. Patton was impressive on the national stage with a pair of come-from-behind victories in the first two rounds of the UTR Singles B Flight, first earning a 3-6, 6-2, 1-0 win over Millikin's Greg Schwoeppe in the round of 16, before advancing to the semifinals round of the bracket with a 0-6, 7-5, 1-0 win over second-seeded Julian Kitchingman of Principia. Patton did bow out of the tournament in the semifinal round with a 6-4, 6-2 loss against Hope's Justin Folkert. Minard, who competed in the UTR Singles A Flight, opened play with a dominating 6-0, 6-0 win over Ohio Wesleyan's Billy Lewis, before dropping a hard-fought 6-2, 6-3 decision against Case's Kenneth Boyette in the quarterfinal round.
Both the Wittenberg men's and women's tennis teams will put a bow on the fall portions of their schedules this weekend by making the trek up to Northern Ohio for an NCAC cross-divisional match against Oberlin on Saturday (10/6) at 2:30 p.m.