The Gustavus men’s tennis team put forth a valiant effort against Trinity University in the second round of the NCAA Midwest Regional on Saturday, but it wasn’t quite enough as the 11th ranked Tigers slipped past the Gusties 5-3 in front of a boisterous home crowd of nearly 300 at the Swanson Tennis Center.
The match came down to the wire as Trinity’s Max Frey rallied to defeat Amrik Donkena 4-6, 7-6 (3), 6-2 at #1 singles to give Tigers the decisive fifth point. The tightly contested #6 singles match was stopped with Trinity’s Ben Carroll holding a slight edge over Gustavus’s Joe MacGibbon 7-6 (2), 2-6, 3-2. The contest, which was played indoors at the Swanson Tennis Center due to rain, lasted three hours and thirty five minutes.
“Obviously it was a disappointing result, but I can’t say enough about how the team competed today,” stated head coach Tommy Valentini. “The guys played hard and their effort was fantastic. It was a really mature effort from a young team and I think it is definitely something we can build on for the future.”
Gustavus sees its season come to an end with a record of 18-9, while Trinity (15-12) advances to face top-seeded Chicago University, which defeated Grinnell 5-2 early in the day, on Sunday at noon (CDT). The winner will advance to the NCAA Team Finals, which will be hosted by Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Colleges in Claremont, California, May 24-26.