Vikings Set To Host UIC & Valparaiso In Horizon League Openers

Vikings Set To Host UIC & Valparaiso In Horizon League Openers

CLEVELAND, Ohio – The Cleveland State men's tennis team will begin its seven-match Horizon League slate this weekend, hosting UIC and Valparaiso during the opening weekend of league play.

Saturday, March 25 | UIC | 10:00 a.m.
Medical Mutual Tennis Pavilion | 2005 Chester Ave. | Cleveland, Ohio | 44114

Sunday, March 26 | Valparaiso | 10:00 a.m.
Medical Mutual Tennis Pavilion | 2005 Chester Ave. | Cleveland, Ohio | 44114

Follow Along Live!
Fans that are unable to attend this weekend's matches against UIC and Valparaiso will still be able to follow along live, with Live Results available via the men's tennis schedule page on

Vikings Tabbed Second In Horizon League Preseason Poll
Earlier this season, Cleveland State was selected to finish second in the Horizon League Preseason Poll, picking up 35 points and one first-place vote. The Vikings were selected behind preseason favorite and reigning Horizon League Champion, Valparaiso. This is the fifth year that the Horizon League has released a preseason poll, with the Vikings earning a top-two selection in four of the five polls.

Buffington & Malm Named Horizon League Doubles Team Of The Week
Earlier this week the Cleveland State tandem of Colton Buffington and William Malm was named the Horizon League Doubles Team of the Week, picking up the honor after leading Cleveland State's doubles efforts on its annual Spring Break Trip. Buffington and Malm played both of their matches at the No. 2 spot last week, picking up a 6-3 victory at UTSA and owning a 5-4 advantage against Rice before the match was suspended.

Mostardi Leads Cleveland State Singles Lineup
Freshman Nico Mostardi continues to lead the Vikings at the top of the singles lineup, owning a team-best 7-7 singles record this spring after playing all 14 matches at the No. 1 spot. Mostardi, who owns a 14-13 overall singles record this year, is the first Cleveland State freshman to play at No. 1 singles since the 2011-12 season. 

Radosevic Closing In On 50 Career Singles Wins
Entering Horizon League play, junior Mirko Radosevic is closing in on 50 career singles victories, currently owning 45 career wins. Radosevic, who has a 6-6 singles mark this spring, would become the 12th Viking all-time to reach the 50-win milestone.

Medical Mutual Tennis Pavilion
For the second straight year – and first complete year – the Vikings are calling the Medical Mutual Tennis Pavilion home. The MMTP, which opened March 9, 2016, features six temperature-controlled indoor courts. With the opening of the MMTP, Cleveland State became the first Horizon League team to have an on-campus indoor facility.

…Vikings In The MMTP
So far this season the Vikings own a 3-2 record when playing in the Medical Mutual Tennis Pavilion, picking up a 6-1 victory over St. Bonaventure last time on the courts. Overall, Cleveland State owns a 4-5 record in the MMTP, and will have four more home matches this season.

Head Coach Brian Etzkin
Brian Etzkin is in his 15th year at the helm of the Vikings, owning a 213-151 dual match record. Etzkin has guided the Vikings to five Horizon League Tournament titles and five trips to the NCAA Tournament during his tenure. Etzkin recorded his 200th career victory with the men's team last spring, becoming just the second active Horizon League men's tennis coach to achieve the feat.

Scouting The Flames
UIC enters the weekend with a 5-6 overall record this season, and a 0-1 mark in Horizon League play. The Flames, who were selected to finish seventh in the preseason poll, dropped a 7-0 match against Valparaiso in their league-opener earlier this season.

Under head coach Brian Etzkin the Vikings own a 15-6 record against UIC, and have won 13 straight matches against the Flames entering Saturday's contest.

Scouting The Crusaders
Entering the weekend, Valparaiso stands at 14-1 this season, with its lone loss coming as a 4-3 decision at Wisconsin at the start of the spring season. The Crusaders, who were tabbed as the preseason favorite, stand at 1-0 in league play so far this season (7-0 win vs. UIC) and will take on Youngstown State prior to Sunday's match against the Vikings.

This will be the 14th meeting between the two teams over the last 15 seasons, with Cleveland State owning an 8-5 record in the overall series.