Men’s Tennis eager for record against Beavers

Michael Mertz wins straight-set shutout victories to help Bulldogs tie record

BLUFFTON, Ohio – After the women's tennis team matched a record for wins in a season, the men's team stepped up their game and obtained a record of their own.

It's one thing to win a close match to equal a record, but the men's team went all out and dominated Bluffton University with a 9-0 shutout win in tying the school's record for most wins in a season at nine. The win total more than triples last season's win total and the horizon looks bright for a team of young well-coached players.

"Picking up the ninth win of the season was one of our team goals coming in and it was great to have everyone pitch in and be a part of it throughout the year. With six freshmen and only one senior we are an extremely young team, but tripling the win total from last year was a big step for the team and program. The guys are hungry for more and look to raise the standards for the program each and every year," said head coach Adam Albertsen.

Due to the threat of weather, singles play was pushed to the forefront with a sweep. No beaver could stop the flood gates of the Adrian attack as the team won 60 more games than the Beavers in singles play.

With the exception of No. 3 singles, Adrian won the other five matches by a combined score of 60-7. Leading the way with straight-set shutout victories was Michael Mertz at No. 2 singles play.

Also impressive was freshman Ricky Korkiziko, who made his varsity debut in two 6-1 victories at No. 6 singles play. Only losing two games in straight-set victories were Jordan Verbauwhede at No. 1 singles and Alex Holdren at No. 5 singles. Cameron Hamilton  dropped a single game in his straight-set wins at No. 4 singles play. Bluffton did manage to take five of 12 games at No. 3 singles play, but Ryan Delacy prevailed with a convincing 6-1 second set to seal the match.

The momentum did not stop there. Once the Bulldogs opened the floodgates at singles, the Beavers could not stop the overflow and gave way to three wins at doubles play. The pairs of Verbauwhede and Mertz, Hamilton and Holdren, and Delacy and Korkiziko, all claimed victory with eight-straight wins.

Hope College will host the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association tournament this weekend where the team will compete against the rest of the conference on an individual basis.