Feb. 9, 2013
Contact: Renee Adam
CSU's No. 1 doubles team of Ali Shabib and Niklas Jonsson extended their spring win streak to four Saturday, posting an 8-6 victory over an Illinois State tandem that is ranked 58th in the nation. The No. 2 team of Joe VanMeter and Nolan Marks also picked up an 8-6 victory against the Redbirds, giving the Vikings the early 1-0 advantage.
"We had another good doubles effort today, I didn't think we played as well as we did yesterday, but we are finally playing the kind of doubles that we want to play," head coach Brian Etzkin said. "I thought we were going to get some other come back wins in singles today, but Ali, Jorg and Nolan just couldn't get over the hump today. I thought it was another strong effort against a strong team today, and we are very close to being on the winning side of these close matches."
Matt Kuelker picked up Cleveland State's second point of the day in singles action, earning a 6-7 (3), 6-3, 6-0 come from behind victory at the No. 2 spot. Kuelker's win marked the 47th of his career, as he is now tied for seventh all-time on the CSU singles wins list.
"Matt took another step forward today, he is playing better and better every match and is starting to look like himself out there. After not closing out the first set, he put himself in a position to win going into set two and was able to carry the momentum throughout the match," Etzkin said.
The Redbirds were then able to pick up victories in the final five singles matches, with straight set wins at No. 1, 4 and 5. Shabib and Marks pushed their matches to three sets at No. 3 and No. 6 singles, but came up short in the end.
"So far this season we have played a very tough schedule, which will definitely help out down the stretch. Next weekend we play another tough team in Buffalo so we will need to keep working hard and focusing on what we are doing during big points and long matches to come out victorious next weekend," Etzkin said.
The Vikings will return home next weekend to host Buffalo on Saturday, Feb. 16. Next weekend's match will take place at the Chagrin Valley Athletic Club at 4:00 p.m. CSU will be trying to break the program attendance record, so make sure to come out and support your Vikings!
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