St. Olaf 5, Hamline 4 (box)

Men's tennis edges Hamline for second straight 5-4 win

Michael Abdella
April 3, 2012

ST. PAUL, Minn.- The bottom of the lineup led the way for the St. Olaf men's tennis team as the Oles edged out Hamline 5-4 on Tuesday evening at Holt Courts.

St. Olaf got wins from third doubles and third through sixth singles to top the Pipers, who were boosted by the return of top singles player David Croonquist. Jon Foss was the lone Ole to win in both singles and doubles. Hamline was playing without Robert Becker, who was 6-3 between first and second singles and had partnered with Croonquist at first doubles.

Hamline entered the match winless in MIAC action but won two of the three doubles matches. At first doubles, the Piper duo of Bernard Mitambo and Andrew Lutz handed John Wight and Andy Catania their first loss of the spring, taking the match 8-5. Croonquist teamed with Sam Teitelbaum to defeat Knute Gundersen and Stephen Nolan 8-6. Foss and Jack Dutton claimed the lone Ole win by knocking off Sam Gullickson and Brendan Fitzpatrick 8-3, giving the Oles a vital point. Foss and Dutton are now 5-1 on the spring. Entering the match, St. Olaf had won all six of their MIAC doubles matches.

Needing to win four of the six singles matches, the Oles did so by claiming the first four completed matches. St. Olaf got wins from Nolan, Catania, Foss, and Charlie Reinertsen. Reinertsen breezed by Gullickson 6-0, 6-0 to improve to 3-0 in MIAC singles action. Nolan lost only three games against Teitelbaum at third singles to earn his 10th singles win of the spring. Catania put St. Olaf within a match of winning with a straight-forward win over Andrew Lutz. Foss gave the Oles an unassailable 5-2 lead with a 6-1, 6-1 win over Derek Lutz. Hamline battled to win the final two singles matches to make the final score 5-4. At first singles, John Wight lost the first set 6-2 against Croonquist, but responded by winning the second 7-5. However, Croonquist won the match tie-break 10-3. Bernard Mitambo notched his 11th singles win of the year by also coming back from a set down to defeat Knute Gundersen at second singles. Gundersen won the first set 6-2. The second set went to a tie-break and Mitambo took it 7-1 and went on to win the match tie-break 10-3.

With the win, St. Olaf improves to 10-1 this spring, including a 3-0 MIAC mark. Hamline falls to 5-8, 0-5 in the conference. The Oles next match is on April 14, when they again travel to St. Paul for a match at St. Thomas. The Tommies (8-2, 5-0 MIAC) are one of four teams that are undefeated in the conference along with St. Olaf, Gustavus (6-0), and Carleton (4-0). St. Thomas also beat Hamline 5-4 on March 11.

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