Gustavus men’s tennis players Amrik Donkena (Jr., Rochester, Minn.) and Mya Smith-Dennis (So., Savage, Minn.) finished second at the NCAA Doubles Championships on Saturday afternoon in Cary, N.C. The Gusties, who were seeded No. 1 in the tournament, lost to Luis Rattenhuber and Austin Chafetz of Amherst 6-4, 5-7, 3-6 in the championship match.
Donkena and Smith-Dennis advanced to the title match with a 6-4, 7-6 (7-5) victory over Mary Washington’s Evan Charles and Donato Rizzolo earlier in the day. National champion Amherst reached the finals with a 6-7 (7-5), 6-4, 6-4 win over Johns Hopkins.
In the title match, Gustavus took the first set 6-4 and led the second 5-3 before Amherst claimed the ensuing four points to win 7-5. Amherst kept it rolling in the third as it took the first three to cruise to the 6-3 win and claim the Division III title.
Donkena and Smith-Dennis, who earn All-America honors by virtue of finishing second at the NCAA Championships, finish the season with an overall record of 31-5. They also become the first Gusties to finish runner-up at the NCAA Doubles Championships since Andy Bryan and Charlie Paukert did so in 2008.