Men’s Tennis Looks To Repeat At 2014 Horizon League Tournament
CLEVELAND, Ohio – The Cleveland State men's tennis team is set to begin play in the 2014 Horizon League Tournament this weekend, entering the championship as the No. 2 seed after finishing the regular season with a 5-1 mark in league play. The Vikings will open the tournament with a semifinal contest on Saturday (April 26), against the winner of the No. 3 Wright State/No. 6 Youngstown State first round matchup.
Location // University of Michigan Tennis Center // Ann Arbor, Mich.
Live Results // Live Results for all CSU tennis matches this weekend will be available for fans who are unable to attend the tournament, with links on the men's tennis schedule page at CSUVikings.com
Last Time Out: The Vikings secured the No. 2 seed in this year's tournament after going 2-0 last weekend, defeating UIC (6-1) and Valparaiso (5-2). Cleveland State, who has won six of its last seven matches, was led by the trio of Matt Kuelker, Joe VanMeter, and Manuel Bellutti who all went 2-0 in singles play against UIC and Valparaiso.
A Look Back: The Vikings will enter the 2014 Horizon League Tournament as the defending champions, as Cleveland State claimed their fifth league title last season after defeating top-seeded Green Bay in the championship match. The Vikings posted a 4-3 victory over No. 6 Detroit in the semifinals, then earned a matching 4-3 victory over the Phoenix in the title match.
…Cleveland State In The Horizon League Tournament: The Vikings will be chasing their sixth Horizon League title this weekend, as they have dominated the field over the last six years, winning five championships during this span (2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013). This marks the seventh time out of the last eight years that CSU enters the tournament as a top-two seed, and will be trying to advance to the championship match for the seventh straight time. Under head coach Brian Etzkin, the Vikings are 18-6 in Horizon League Tournament matches.
Kuelker Gets Back On Track: After dropping his first singles match in over nine weeks against Green Bay (April 12), Matt Kuelker got back on the winning track last weekend picking up a 6-3, 6-7(1), 6-1 victory at UIC and a 6-2, 7-5 win at Valparaiso. Kuelker has now won 15 of his last 16 matches, and has a team-best 18-3 singles record this spring. He also ranks fifth on the CSU singles wins list with 81 career victories, and needs just two more wins to move into sole possession of fourth place.
VanMeter Extends Win Streak: After going 2-0 last weekend against UIC and Valparaiso, Joe VanMeter extended his singles win streak to 14 straight matches. VanMeter hasn't lost a singles match since February 2, and owns a 15-3 record this spring. With his 4-6, 7-6(7), 6-1 victory at Valparaiso, VanMeter became the third Viking to reach 20 wins overall this season, entering the tournament with a 20-11 overall singles record.
…Bellutti Follows Suit: Manuel Bellutti also extended his singles win streak last weekend, going 8-0 over the last eight matches and winning 14 of his last 15. On the season, Bellutti has a 23-9 singles record, including a 17-3 mark this spring.
Bellutti & VanMeter Finish Perfect In HL Singles Play: The Cleveland State duo of Manuel Bellutti and Joe VanMeter finished the regular season with perfect marks in Horizon League singles play, each posting a 6-0 record. Playing at the No. 4 and No. 5 singles spots, Bellutti and VanMeter are two of six league players to finish the regular season undefeated in HL play.
Bellutti/van der Vloet Doubles Play: Since becoming Cleveland State's No. 3 doubles team six weeks ago, Manuel Bellutti and Jorg van der Vloet have done nothing but win, owning a 5-0 record heading into the Horizon League Tournament. Three of their victories have come in league matches, as they were an integral part of CSU picking up the doubles point against Green Bay, UIC, and Valparaiso.