Daily Egyptian

Men’s tennis opens season at Middle Tennessee State

By Thomas Donley

Five freshmen made career debuts for SIU men’s tennis in the first tournament of the year.

The Salukis travelled to Middle Tennessee State University Dale Short Shootout in Murfreesboro, Tenn., on Friday. SIU won 15 matches throughout the tournament.

The Salukis’ first match was against Belmont University on Friday.

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SIU’s top doubles pair, junior Jonny Rigby and sophomore Michal Kianicka, started off with a win over Bruin seniors Mauricio Antun and Marko Lovrinovic. Senior Szymon Opieczonek and freshman Alex Pozo defeated junior Robin Demasse and sophomore Bruno Russo. Both Saluki victories came by scores of 8-4.

In singles, freshmen Peter Molloy, Max Phipps and Daniel Martinez all picked up victories in their SIU debuts. Martinez and Phipps defeated their opponents in straight sets.

MTSU swept the Salukis in singles Saturday. Only Kianicka and Opieczonek played to a third set against the Blue Raiders.

SIU took two of three doubles matches from MTSU. Rigby and Kianicka defeated junior Dima Zyhmantovich and senior Ben Davis 8-6. Opieczonek and Pozo knocked off senior Yannick Born and freshman Miguel Fernandez 8-5.

The Salukis closed out the Dale Short Shootout against Austin Peay State University on Sunday, winning five of seven matches.

SIU won all but one singles match against the Governors. Rigby and Kianicka picked up victories in the No. 1 and No. 2 spots, respectively. Pozo, playing in the No. 3 position, picked up his first career singles win.

Martinez won his singles match at No. 5, and at No. 6, freshman Ransom Braaten defeated APSU’s junior Evan Borowski in his Saluki debut.

In doubles, Rigby and Kianicka remained undefeated in doubles with an 8-4 win over seniors Dimitar Ristovski and Iago Seffrin in the No. 1 spot. Phipps and Braaten defeated Borowski and sophomore Manuel Montenegro at the No. 3 spot.

The Salukis ended the tournament with six doubles wins and nine singles wins. MTSU won 17 singles matches and seven doubles matches to win the tournament.

SIU will travel to Tulsa, Okla., for the ITA All American starting on Saturday.

Thomas can be reached at [email protected] and on Twitter @tdonleyDE

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