On Friday the Chicago men’s tennis team will be competing in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association’s Championship tournament, hosted by Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter, MN. The eight-team tournament will feature some of the top talents in DIII tennis from around the nation.
Emory is placed at the top of the tournament lineup and comes into the first round ranked second in the country. Emory is followed by #3 Wash U, #6 UC Santa Cruz, #7 Kenyon, # 8 Pomona-Pitzer, #10 Trinity, the #11 Maroons, and Gustavus Adolphus. The host college is the only unranked team participating in the tournament.
Chicago is set to face off against Wash U in the first round in what is sure to be a heated and hardly contested round of matches. “The key to our success will be our doubles performance, since it’s always really tight against good teams. I am confident about our singles,” second-year Alex Golovin said.
The Wash U team features the Putterman brothers, Adam and Ross, both of whom are among the best in country. Adam is ranked third nationally and first in the Central division, while his brother Ross is ranked 25th nationally and sixth in the Central division.
The competition will not be any lighter in doubles play. WashU has three ranked duos: Max Franklin and Kevin Chu, ranked 12th nationally and third in the division; the Puttermans, ranked fifth in the division; and Kareem Farah and Cameron Chiang, who are ranked 24th in the Central division.
“I expect Wash U to come out aggressive, but if we hold our ground we can win,” Golovin said.
The Wash U Bears may be impressive, but so are the 11th -ranked Maroons, who until last Sunday had been undefeated.
"I think this will be a good time for us to relax and play our best. We've been a bit tense out there recently, and this will be a good time to bounce back from our loss against Whitewater last week," interim head coach Taka Bertrand said.
If the men defeat the Bears, they will then face off against the winner of the UC Santa Cruz and Trinity games. And likewise, if Chicago loses it will face the loser of the Santa Cruz and Trinity matchup.
The men will play today at 11:30 a.m. and, if the tournament goes as hoped, won’t be returning until Sunday.