Huskies go 1-1 in Nebraska

By Zac Camacho

In its final matches before conference play begins, the men’s tennis team split matches between Creighton University Bluejays on Friday and the University of Nebraska Cornhuskers on Saturday.

They beat Creighton 6-1 for their tenth win this year and lost to Nebraska 4-1.

“I think we have a lot to look forward too,” said Head Coach Patrick Fisher. “We definitely got a long ways to go though.”

Friday – Creighton University

Seniors Tom Hjertonsson and Louis-Philippe Hamel earned the first doubles win 6-3 over senior Brooks Kendall and sophomore Armando Gandini at No. 3.

Creighton sophomores Mac Mease and Daniel Lopez-Rey beat senior Eric Marbach and redshirt freshman Kristopher Ortega 7-4.

NIU won the doubles point when sophomore Bor Schweiger Muzar and senior Georg Lundkvist took down senior Alex Koca and freshman Stratton Brown 7-5 at the No. 1.

At singles, Ortega continued his strong freshman campaign with a 4-6, 6-2, 7-6 win over Kendall at the No. 1.

Marbach’s first match back from his back injury ended in a 7-5, 4-6, 1-0 (10-5) loss at the No. 2 to Brown.

Despite two losses in his first matches back, Fisher said he has nothing but confidence in the senior.

“Another week and he’ll be back to being normal,” Fisher said.

Lundkvist outlasted Gandini 6-3, 1-6, 6-1 at the No. 3, clinching the match victory for NIU.

Hamel at the No. 4 and Muzar at the No. 5 were the only matches that didn’t go past the second set. Hamel overpowered Koca 6-3, 6-2 while Muzar topped Lopez-Rey 7-5, 6-3.

At No. 6, Hjertonsson dropped the first set against freshman Jose Oscar Diaz but came back to win 4-6, 6-2, 7-5.

Saturday – University of Nebraska

Nebraska downed NIU 4-1 in the Huskies’ last match before conference play.

NIU dropped the doubles point losing at the No. 1 and No. 3. Muzar and Lundkvist lost the No. 1 match to senior Linus Erhart and junior Toby Boyer 6-3. Hamel and Hjertonsson forfeited the doubles point, losing to sophomores Dylan Bednarczyk and Chris Dean.

Lundkvist finished first at the No. 3, falling 5-7, 1-6 to Erhart. Hjertonsson defeated junior Rok Krizaj 6-2, 6-3 at the No. 6 for his ninth win on the season and the Huskies’ only point of the day.

Muzar put up a fight in the second set but ultimately fell at the No. 5 to Dean 1-6, 5-6.

To end the match, Marbach lost Bednarczyk 1-6, 5-5 at the No. 2.

“We had a lot of opportunities we let slip away,” Fisher said. “But on the bright side of things, this team has really grown. We are a completely different team than we were the first weekend against Drake.”

The Huskies begin conference play against Binghamton University 4 p.m. Friday at the Boylan Tennis Courts in Rockford.