Illinois State Falls to No. 48 Drake in Semifinals of MVC, 4-0
April 28, 2012
OMAHA, Neb. - The Illinois State men's tennis team dropped to No. 48 Drake in the semifinal round of the State Farm Missouri Valley Conference (MVC) Tournament Saturday at the Koch Family Tennis Center in Omaha, Neb., 4-0. The loss concluded the Redbirds' season.
Head coach Cris James was impressed with the determination and talent Drake brought to the competition.
"Drake really played hard," said James. "They have some exceptional talent and were the better team today."
Drake came out strong as James McKie and Anis Ghorbel defeated Alexander Pelaez and Tuomas Manner, 8-3, in the No. 1 position. Muddappa Appanervanda and Willi Peter fell to Jean Erasmus and Robin Goodman in the No. 2 spot, 8-1, causing Jordan Badenko and Jusso Ojanen's match against Alen Salibasic and Cesar Bracho to go unfinished.
Singles play proved Drake was not letting up, as Pelaez dropped to Anis Ghorbel, 6-0, 6-4, in the No. 1 position and Manner lost to McKie in the No. 2 spot, 6-1, 6-2. The next to finish was Badenko who fell to Ben Mullis, 6-0, 6-1 in the No. 6 position.
The 4-0 lead allowed Appanervanda's match against Jonathan Hadash in the No. 4 spot (6-1, 3-2), Span's match against Jean Erasmus in the No. 3 position (4-5), and Peter's match against Alen Salisbasic in the No. 5 spot (4-6, 3-0), to go unfinished.
James was proud of the effort given by Span in his final collegiate match.
"Skip came to win and played with determination today, as he has been playing like the past couple matches, " said James. "He was an excellent asset to our team as well as this season and it was great to watch him play strong in his last match."
The Redbirds end their season with a 9-14 record, overall.
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