DeKALB — Men’s tennis was handed its first loss in over a month Saturday in a close contest against DePaul University which ended 4-3 in favor of the Blue Demons.
Despite the loss, Head Coach Patrick Fisher expressed his appreciation of his team’s efforts.
“Tough loss. We put ourselves in position in both doubles and singles, but we couldn't get it.” Fisher said.“DePaul is a great team, and our schedule is crazy tough.”
Sophomore Mikko Malinen and junior Victor Spolidorio struck first in the match, winning the initial doubles point 6-4. However, NIU’s good form did not last, as they lost the decisive third doubles match of the day in close fashion after also dropping the second. As a result, the Blue Demons claimed the day’s doubles point.
In singles competition, NIU managed three victories through the first five matches.
First to win was senior Bor Schweiger Muzar, who won in three sets against Sophomore Vito Tonejc.
The Huskies dropped the next two matches, with DePaul seniors Boris Spanjaard and Christopher Casati both recording wins in their respective matches to put the Blue Demons up 3-1.
NIU rallied with Malinen and Spolidorio grabbing the next two singles points in tight, three-set matches to tie DePaul at 3-3 heading into the final and decisive singles match of the day.
Unfortunately, first-year Mikael Volbach could not seal the comeback for the Huskies, as he fell to DePaul senior Fran Tonejc in straight sets in the decisive match of the day, 7-6 and 6-3, respectively.
NIU will not have time to lick its wounds, as men’s tennis will soon travel 1 p.m. Tuesday to Louisiana to face the University of New Orleans Privateers. The match will take place at the New Orleans University Tennis Center.