Men’s tennis wins again over Cardinals


Redshirt freshman Kristopher Ortega and senior Eric Marbach compete in the Huskies’ 7-0 home win Jan. 25 against Cardinal Stritch University.

By Zac Camacho

DeKALB — The men’s tennis team beat Ball State University 4-3 in its closest match since defeating them Feb. 3.

The Huskies (13-6, 3-1 Mid-American Conference) claim sole possession of second place in the MAC with the win.

The Huskies fell behind early to the Cardinals, losing the doubles point for the second time this season.

“We didn’t play good at all, but we won,” said Head Coach Patrick Fisher.

Senior Georg Lundkvist and sophomore Bor Schweiger Muzar lost their fifth match paired together at the No. 1 spot to junior Nemanja Guzina and redshirt junior Collin Rigney.

In the Huskies’ only doubles win, senior Eric Marbach and redshirt freshman Kristopher Ortega defeated juniors Marko Guzina and Conner Andersen at the No. 2 6-4.

At the No. 3, seniors Tom Hjertonsson and Louis-Philippe Hamel couldn’t outlast freshman Chris Adams and junior Tom Carney, falling to them 7-6.

“We just competed really hard and we fought, and that’s really been the DNA of our team,” Fisher said.

In singles, Ortega continued his impressive first year at NIU. Ortega shut out Nemanja Guzina in both sets, winning 6-0, 6-0. He picked up his 12th win of the spring and improved to 6-2 since moving to the No. 1 slot.

Marbach lost in two sets at the No. 2 6-4, 7-5 to Marco Guzina. The loss brings Marbach’s record at the No. 2 spot to 2-4 since being moved from the No. 1.

Hamel tied up the match with a three set win at the No. 3 against freshman Thibault De Negri. Hamel won the first set 7-6, then got blown out in the second 1-6 and came back to win 6-3 in the final set.

In another three-set game, Lundkvist dropped the first set 6-7 but came back to win the next two sets 6-3, 6-4 over Anderson at the No. 4.

Muzar kept his match close at the No. 5 against Adams, winning the first set 6-3, dropping the second set 5-7 and finishing him off 6-4 in the final set.

Freshman Victor Spolidorio lost in two sets 6-4, 6-4 to Bryce Bonin at the No. 6, ending the match 4-3.

The win marks NIU’s second victory over the Cardinals this year.

The Huskies will travel to Binghamton University for their final road match of the regular season to take on the Bearcats 10 a.m. Sunday at the Binghamton Tennis Center in Binghamton, New York.

“They’re really talented, [and] they match up well with us,” Fisher said. “It’s always difficult going there and playing.”