While most Valpo students were enjoying spring break, the men’s tennis team took a trip down to Florida where they went undefeated in seven matches. Coming off the sweep, the Crusaders will start Horizon League play on March 25.
“Even though we had seven matches in a week (the players) brought the energy and played hard in every match,” coach Jim Daugherty said.
One of Daugherty’s biggest concerns was if the players would get tired having so many matches in the Florida weather, but the Crusaders didn’t seem to be affected.
“The surprising thing was that the Florida players are usually used to the weather, but they looked more tired than we were,” Daugherty said.
Daugherty was also happy that the whole roster got to see some action during the week.
“We got all ten players involved, shifted the lineup around. Everybody got a lot of tennis in and all the younger players got some development,” Daugherty said.
On top of the sweep, three Valpo seniors earned Horizon League recognition. Kyle Dunn received Horizon League singles player of the week, and the team of Charlie Emhardt and Jeffrey Schorsch got the award for the week’s top doubles team.
“I was surprised that I was named singles player of the week,” Dunn said. “With guys like (Schorsch and Emhardt) at the top of the lineup it’s kind of hard for other players to get some sort of recognition.”
“It’s rare for a lower half player to get that recognition, but when it happens, it tells that player that he’s doing something right,” Daugherty said.
With the recognition the seniors got from the Horizon League, they’re ready to take on their conference opponents as they finish their Valpo careers.
“Since we’re one of the top teams in our conference, we need to keep that mentality that every player is the best at what they do,” Schorsch said.
Valpo is also looking to keep playing well with the help and leadership of the seniors.
“We want to keep our streak alive going into conference play, and there are a few matches ahead of us that will test our patience and our confidence,” Schorsch said.
Up next for Valpo men’s tennis, they open conference play on the road this weekend at Youngstown State on Saturday, March 25, and Cleveland State the next day.