14 Iowa Conference team titles
PELLA — Windy conditions and setbacks in the singles matches cost the Central College men’s tennis team a victory in its final regular season match, suffering a 5-4 loss to Wartburg College Tuesday.
The highlight of the match came early on. The Dutch (12-6 overall, 4-3 conference) swept the Knights (12-9 overall, 4-3 conference) in doubles play. West Adelman (freshman, Geneva, Ill.) and Kyle Freischlag (junior, Downers Grove, Ill., Downers Grove South HS) at No. 1 doubles won 8-5. Tim Kahl (sophomore, Grinnell) and John Seier (junior, Waverly, Neb.) claimed an 8-6 victory at No. 2 and teamed at No. 3, Zane Hendricks (junior, Fort Dodge) and Josh Forst (sophomore, Woodridge, Ill., Downers Grove South HS) won 8-5.
“It was a really windy afternoon, but we came out from the start and won all the doubles,” said coach Steve Tyler. “It was a promising start because, normally, when you sweep doubles, the win is easy to wrap up. We set up the singles matches but couldn’t pull through.”
In the singles matches, a few points made all the difference. At No. 4, Kahl came out on top, 7-5, 7-6, 10-2, for the only Dutch singles match victory.
“Tim played really great in a very tight match,” Tyler said. “It was a gut-check moment for him and he battled through it.”
No. 3 Collin Schares (sophomore, Johnston) and No. 6 Pat Daly (senior, Shawnee, Kan., Shawnee Mission NW) both took their matches to a breaker, but lost in the third set. Schares lost 3-6, 6-4, 6-4 and Daly stumbled 6-1, 5-7, 6-4.
“I tip my hat to Wartburg because they came back from the doubles and competed,” said Tyler. “It came down to a couple of points here and there. We couldn’t close those tight matches tonight.”
The Dutch have a few days to rest before traveling to Cedar Rapids for the Iowa Conference team tournament on Friday. Central is tied for third place in the conference with Wartburg and Buena Vista University. Team seeds are pending.