Men’s tennis hopes to defend undefeated home record

By Darwin Minnis

Men’s tennis is ready for its first match in ten days and it comes in the form of a double header.

The Huskies (12-5) will play the St. Louis Billikens (6-5) at 1 p.m. Saturday in Rockford before they take on the Cardinal Stritch Wolves (6-8) at 5 p.m. The Huskies are a perfect 10-0 in Rockford this season.

With such a long break since their last game and important conference games right around the corner, Coach Patrick Fisher welcomes the double header.

“Two games will give everybody a chance to play,” Fisher said. “With the last ten days off, it will help everyone get back into the swing of things before we head into conference play.”

First up on Saturday is the Billikens. St. Louis is coming off three straight wins and will surely be looking to continue their momentum against the Huskies. Last year, NIU took this match in an easy 6-1 victory. For singles, the No. 1 match will come against the Billikens’ Patrick Kella who is 6-5 on the season and coming off a win last week. The Huskies’ probable No. 1 will be Axel Lagerlof, who is 5-3 in the No. 1 this season.

After the first match, the Huskies will stay in Rockford and take on the Cardinal Stritch Wolves. The Wolves were on a 3-game win streak before losing to University of Wisconsin-Whitewater last week 0-9. The Huskies also played UW-Whitewater earlier in the season, getting a 7-0 win. In No. 1 for the Wolves will be freshman Jimmy Le. Le is 7-6 in singles this season and he will be looking to get back on track after dropping his last two matches.

With the season winding down and the MAC Tournament in the back of Fisher’s head, he wants to make sure the team uses these games to prepare for what’s ahead.

“We’ve played passively at times recently,” Fisher said. “To win championships, we need to be aggressive all the time. If we can win 6-1 or 6-2, we should. We shouldn’t cruise to a win, we should sprint. Finish business and get off the court.”