MTen: Unbeaten Vanguard ousts Westmont

INDIAN WELLS – The Westmont men’s tennis Golden State Athletic Conference Tournament run came to an end this morning in the semifinal round as they dropped their final match 5-0 to an undefeated #3 Vanguard University team.

Coming off of a great win against Biola University yesterday, the men were looking for some successful sets this morning as they started off with doubles play. But when you go against a talented, undefeated roster like Vanguard, you truly need the odds to be ever in your favor.

“I felt that all three courts of our doubles got off to a bit of a sluggish start,” opened Mark Basham. “My hope was that we could be confident and get some early opportunities in those matches. But unfortunately we didn’t. Although Vanguard has some of the very best talent, I was confident that at number two we could be successful or at least very, very competitive. They competed well, but we were simply outmatched.”

On court number one, Carl Lindqvist and Joshua Barnard battled it out with Stefan Kilchohhfer and Roger Muri who handily won 8-2. Right next to them was Christian Mathis and Travis Kimsey who went back and forth with Fabio Silva and Michael Rjazanov who won with another score of 8-2. Doubles court number three was occupied by Jan Sibbel and Travis Smelley who put on an impressive performance against their opponents. Smelley, who has not seen a lot of doubles court time this season, held his own and made some great plays throughout the match, despite the eventual 8-4 loss to the Lions.

Singles play did not prove to get any easier. “Being down 0-3, we were looking to make a run on an at least one of our singles courts, but that didn’t happen,” reflected Basham. Travis Smelley dropped both of his sets 6-0, 6-1 to his Lion opponent. A couple of minutes later, Jan Sibbel dropped his sets 6-0, 6-0 on court number three to give Vanguard their fifth and final point of the day.

Since Vanguard was the first to a team score of five, four singles matches were left unfinished. On court number one, Kilchohhfer was playing Lindqvist 6-2, 5-0. On court number two Josh Barnard was making a run against Fabio Silva who was leading 6-3, 2-1 upon conclusion. Christian Mathis played in the number four court and was leading 6-5 in the first set and on court five Travis Kimsey was trailing Daymon Johnson 6-3, 3-2 at the end.

The Warrior men currently hold a record of 10-14. They are now officially done with all conference related games and will be focusing their attention on the National Tournament in May. “Yesterday’s win against Biola was so important for us. The men played very solid tennis, showed a lot of fight and won that match, giving us a needed confidence boost. I am encouraged that we will have a little bit of time before nationals to get our men healthy and rested up. We are hoping to have most people back in action for the final stretch. Hopefully we can play well in a first round match down in Alabama and then give it a good run into the tournament,” closed out Basham.