Players from host school Gustavus Adolphus captured both the singles and doubles titles at this weekend’s Wilson/ITA Midwest Region Men’s Tennis Championships at the Brown Outdoor Courts in St. Peter.
After surviving a tie-breaker in their morning semifinal, the fifth-seeded tandem of Mike Burdakin (So., Bettendorf, Iowa) and Charlie Paukert (So., Grand Forks, N.D.) took down top-seeded Gustie teammates Jesse Brauer (Sr., Mankato, Minn.) and Andy Bryan (Jr., Edina, Minn.) in the doubles final 6-4, 1-6, 10-8. Burdakin and Paukert were pushed to the limit in the semifinals by a third Gustavus doubles team, Nick Hansen (Fr., Duluth, Minn.) and Ben Tomasek (So., Oakdale, Minn.), but prevailed 9-8 (6). For both Brauer and Bryan, it was the end of a long, strenuous day. Both took out higher seeds in Sunday’s Wilson/ITA singles semifinals to reach the midday final. Bryan defeated second-seeded Dan LaFountaine of Grinnell 6-2, 6-2, while Brauer felled top seed Aaron Sunday of St. Norbert 6-0, 7-5. Matched up in the singles final, the doubles teammates split the opening sets with Bryan taking the opening set 6-4, with Brauer bouncing back in the second set 6-2 to tie match. The pair played to a tie-breaker in the final set, with Brauer edging his doubles partner by a score of 8-6.
Brauer and Burdakin and Paukert advance to the Oct. 12-15 Intercollegiate Tennis Association National Small College Championships at Florida Gulf Coast University in Fort Myers.
Also contested Sunday was the final of the Midwest Open singles tournament, won by Brett Gressick of UW-Eau Claire 6-0, 7-5 over Alex Mory of UW-Whitewater. Gressick reached the final with a 3-6, 7-6 (7-5), 7-6 (7-6) win over Gustavus’ Will Butzlaff (Sr., Lake Bluff, Ill.) in a Sunday morning semifinal.