Last weekend brought a close to the Lawrence University Men’s Tennis team’s season. The team competed in the conference championships at the Nielsen Tennis Stadium in Madison, Wisconsin. The singles competition was played out on Saturday, April 30, while the doubles competition was played out on Sunday, Apri 31. For singles, the team brought home consolation titles for Lawrence.
Junior David Jumes fell to Carroll University’s Peter Jaeger in the championship quarterfinals at No. 1, but turned it around in the consolation flight to make it to finals. Jumes won the consolation championship at No. 1 against Illinois College’s Miguel Vaca.
Senior Brain DeCorte defeated Monmouth College’s Landon Walker in the quarterfinals at No. 2, 6-3, 2-6, 6-1, but lost against Grinnell’s Cole Miller in the semifinals at No. 2 later that day.
Sophomore Bill Schuman-Kline lost in the quarterfinals at No. 3, but came back in the consolation flight to win the consolation championship at No. 3. Schuman-Kline defeated Illinois’ Elijah Rhoad to move to the championship game. To win the consolation flight, he defeated St. Norbert College’s Kyle Battle 8-0.
Senior Mitch Kasprzyk won in the first round against Illinois College’s T.J, Lawal 6-0, 6-3, but fell to Lake Forest College’s Dragan Trivanovic in the quarterfinals at No. 4 later in the day.
Senior Adam Busch lost a close match against St. Norbert’s Joe Oleniczak at No. 5, but came back in the consolation flight to come out on top in the finals against Carroll’s Andrew Nemcek, 8-2.
Senior Ethan Perushek fell to Mitchel Gjerseth from Carroll in the quarterfinals at No. 6, but won against Knox College’s Ganesh Uppalapu 8-1. Perushek fell short in the consolation championship against Lake Forest’s Joe Bove.
During the doubles competition on Sunday, Lawrence’s three doubles team played some tough matches. One team was able to make it to the finals, while another team won the consolation championship.
Lawrence’s No. 1 doubles team, DeCorte and Jumes, defeated St. Norbert’s Alex Vanderberg and Ben Vande Zande in the quarterfinals, 8-4. In the semifinals, the team beat Lake Forest’s Dan Pivonka and Nick Rehm, 9-7. DeCorte and Jumes fell to Grinnell’s Tommy Pitcher and Jose Coloma in a close match, 8-6.
The No. 2 doubles team, freshman David Brooker and Schuman-Kline, fell to Cornell’s Thomas Weiss and Corey Duncan in the quarterfinals, 8-4. In the consolation semifinals, the team was able to defeat Ripon College’s Zach Muench and Jacob Kramer 8-0. In the consolation final, Brooker and Schuman-Kline defeated Monmouth College’s Walker and Saxon Day, 8-4, for the consolation championship.
The No. 3 doubles team, Busch and sophomore Izaya Turenne, defeated Carroll’s Nemcek and Gjerseth in the quarterfinals 8-3. The team was soon defeated by Grinnell’s Tracy Johnson and Sam Stickels in the semifinals, 8-1.
With the season at its end, the team will be graduating four seniors from their team of 10. The coach, Steve Francour, was honored with the Midwest Conference Men’s Tennis Coach of the Year.
The season marks an important milestone. For the first time in three years, the Lawrence tennis program qualified for the conference playoffs. The tennis team has been consistently improving over those years. They will be a team to watch out for when they next take the court next spring.