Whitewater, Wis. – Despite jumping out to a 2-1 lead after doubles, the Gustavus Adolphus men’s tennis team could not keep a surging Trinity University team at bay in singles. The Tigers earned four unanswered points in singles to give them a 5-2 victory over the Gusties in the third round of the NCAA Men’s Tennis Tournament on Sunday at Wangerin Courts. With the Whitewater Region Championship under its belt, Trinity (20-9) advances to Kalamazoo, Mich. – the site of the 2013 NCAA Championship Series. Gustavus concludes its season with an overall record of 22-10.
The Gusties were on the scoreboard first with a victory at No. 1 doubles. Amrik Donkena (Sr., Rochester, Minn.) and Mya Smith-Dennis (Jr., Savage, Minn.) kicked things off with a tightly-contested, back-and-forth 8-6 victory over Erick DelaFuente and Jordan Mayer.
Gustavus earned the final point of doubles play when Grant Leisner (Jr., Andover, Minn.) and Tyler Johnson (Sr., West Bend, Wis.) edged Aaron Skinner and Nicolas Moreno. The two pairs battled from start to finish but in the end it was Johnson and Leisner coming out with the final doubles point after a 9-8 win following a 5-0 sweep in the tie-breaker.
The momentum took a turn in singles play as Trinity registered four straight points with wins at the No. 2, 3, 4, and 5 positions.
Jordan Mayer brought the score to even at 2-2 with a 6-2, 6-3 win over Joey MacGibbon (Jr., Apple Valley, Minn.) at No. 5. Greg Haugen then earned a victory over Grant Leisner at No. 3 to put the Tigers on top for the first time in the match. Haugen defeated Leisner 6-2, 6-4.
Erick DelaFuente extended the Trinity lead to 4-2 with a 6-4, 6-3 win over Juan Luis Chu (Jr., Lima Peru) at No. 4, and Nicolas Moreno brought the match to an end with a 7-6, 6-2 victory over Mya Smith-Dennis at No. 2.
Trinity University will now face Williams in the NCAA quarterfinals on May 20 in Kalamazoo, Michigan.