The men's and women's tennis team swept the Hesston College Larks in a home match Tuesday. The Tiger men, who lost to the Larks 3-6 a month ago, turned things around and won this round 5-4. The Tiger women defeated the Larks for a second time this season. They defeated Hesston at their place 6-3, and this time increased the margin of victory to 7-2.
Normally in a tennis dual, the teams play doubles first, followed by singles. Due to time constraints, the format was flipped and the Tigers and Larks squared off in singles first. In the men's dual, CCC and HC split the six single matches 3 and 3. The Tigers got wins at the #1, #3, and #4 spots. Mark Gayer, who had been defeated by Hesston's #1 twice earlier in the season, got the monkey off his back and won his match 6-0, 6-4. Dillin Lanting got back into the win column with a 6-4, 4-6, 10-7 victory. Gunnar Kelly at #4 also got the monkey off his back defeating Taylor Ermoian 6-4, 7-5. He also had lost twice earlier in the season to Ermoian.
The men's dual came down to the doubles portion. In the last meeting with the Larks, the Tigers went 1-2 in doubles and lost the dual. This time it would be the Tigers winning 2 of the 3 doubles matches to win the dual. The #1 team of Mark Gayer and Ivory Washington clinched the dual by dominating their match, and winning 8-4. Probably the most impressive match of the day came from the number two doubles team of Nathan Vanderhoof and Dillin Lanting. Lanting and Vanderhoof, who were defeated by the same Lark team at Hesston 3-8, reversed things and won 8-3.
On the women's side, the Tigers dominated the singles portion to win their dual 7-2. The Larks only had 5 ladies available and forfeited their #6 singles spot and #3 double spot. The Tigers' singles wins came at the #1, #3, #4, and #5 spots. Kristen Reith started things off with a 6-0, 6-1 victory over fellow MHS grad Erika Wedel. Rachel Graves, at #3, needed three sets to get her win 6-4, 2-6, 10-8. Samantha Graves won in straight sets at #4 6-3, 7-5. Susan Alt got her third win over Hesston's Courtney Unruh this season in a marathon match 7-5, 6-3.
On the doubles side of things, the Tigers' #1 team of Kristen Reith and Victoria McCord avenged a loss to the Larks #1 team back in March at the Kansas Wesleyan University spring invitational. On Tuesday, Reith and McCord were up 6-3 before losing 4 games in a row to trail the Larks 6-7. They then rallied to win the final three games for a 9-7 victory.
Coach Nelson was pleased with the his teams' performance on Tuesday saying, " I was very proud of the way both of our teams played today. We got good performances from our ladies in singles and our guys stepped up and played good doubles. This was a good confidence boost for both programs."
The Tigers are back in action next week with a pair of matches on Monday with John Brown University and Oklahoma Wesleyan University. Both matches are on the road.