The Valparaiso men's tennis team fell 4-3 to Western Michigan in a dogfight at West Hills Tennis Club in Kalamazoo, Michigan on Sunday afternoon.
The Crusaders netted victories at No. 1 and 2 doubles to gain a 1-0 advantage. Dave Bacalla (Skokie, Ill./Niles North) and Chase Hamilton(Hinsdale, Ill./Central) downed Stephen Payne/Hamilton 6-4 at No. 2. After Jimmy Beckwith/Jefta Kecic picked up a 6-2 win at No. 3 over Lucas Waak (Manitiwoc, Wis./Roncalli) and Garrett Gardner (Poland, Ohio/Poland), Charlie Emhardt (Carmel, Ind./Carmel) and Jeffrey Schorsch(Perrysburg, Ohio/Perrysburg) seized the point-clinching tilt, 6-4, at No. 1 opposite Ruben Grenier/Maik Steiner.
Emhardt gave the Brown and Gold a 2-0 edge following his 6-0, 6-4 win at No. 5 versus Beckwith. Steiner put the Broncos on the scoreboard by virtue of his 6-4, 6-2 win over Schorsch at No. 2.
Payne knotted the match at 2-2 after he downed Waak 6-4, 6-3 in their duel at No. 6. Kecic outlasted Bacalla in a three-setter at No. 1, 6-2, 4-6, 6-1.
Grenier captured a 2-6, 6-3, 6-1 triumph at No. 3 against Gardner, securing the match for Western Michigan.
Kyle Dunn (Fond du Lac, Wis./Fond du Lac) finished up play with a 4-6, 7-6 (7-2), 6-4 marathon victory against Hamilton at No. 4.
Valpo (15-4) will continue road play next weekend in southwestern Ohio. The Crusaders will play at Wright State (7-11) on Saturday at 7 pm ET/6 pm CT before taking on Dayton (6-7) at 3 pm ET/2 pm CT at the Five Seasons Tennis Club.