Illinois State Comes Out On Top Against Southern Illinois, 4-3
April 22, 2012
CARBONDALE, Ill. - The Illinois State men's tennis team closed out the regular season and Missouri Valley Conference (MVC) season Sunday against Southern Illinois at the University Courts in Carbondale, Ill. The Redbirds beat Southern Illinois, 4-3, giving them a 2-3 MVC record going into the State Farm MVC Tournament next weekend.
Illinois State received the first point of the competition, wining 2-of-3 matches in doubles play.
Tuomas Manner and Alexander Pelaez beat Brandon Florez and Stanislas Rodier in the No. 1 position, 8-6, while Muddappa Appanervanda and Willi Peter fell in the No. 2 spot to Szymon Opieczonek and Orhan Spahic, 8-6. Jordan Badenko and Skip Span defeated Badr Cherradi and Jordan Snyder, 9-7, in the No. 3 position.
A few injuries caused the `Birds to have a significant change-up in their singles line-up, allowing the underclassmen to step up to the plate.
In the No. 4 spot, Appandervanda beat Orhan Spahic, 6-1, 6-4, as Peter came out on top against Rafael Cuadrillero in the No. 5 position, 3-6, 7-6, 6-1. In the No. 6 spot, Badenko defeated Szymon Opieczonek, 7-5, 6-1.
"It was very good to see success in the bottom half of our lineup today," said head coach Cris James. "Muddappa got off to a good start, really gave it to the guy, and played with confidence. Willi was down for awhile but was able to come back in three sets and Jordan was close the whole first set but was able to pull through. They saw success because they found a way to believe in themselves. I think Jordan's victory in doubles gave him some confidence going into singles because it showed him that he can get it done in the important moments."
Manner fell to Badr Cherradi in the No. 1 position, 2-6, 7-6, 7-5, while Span dropped to Stanislas Rodier in the No. 2 spot, 6-2, 6-3. Jusso Ojanen withdrew from the competition after two sets due to an injury in the No. 3 position to Brandon Florez, 3-6, 6-3, wr.
"We have work to do to get healthy for next week," said James. "I am glad we were able to sneak into a tie for third, overall, though. We had higher expectations than third going into the season, so we certainly aren't thrilled, but I know we have talent, so we are hopeful that we can get a little bit healthier and put it all together for a couple matches next weekend."
Illinois State will compete at the State Farm MVC Tournament Friday in Omaha, Neb.
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