February 04, 2012

Veteran Men's Tennis Team Opens Season Saturday

 

Team unity is the focus of the Hamline Men’s Tennis Team for 2012. For the first time in many years, Hamline coach Jon Henning will have a senior laden team looking to build off of an invaluable experience in the MIAC Playoffs a year ago.   

With many key returners back, the loss of senior captain Kyle Helgemoe will be felt and others will need to step up in both singles and doubles. Returning five seniors who all have experience competing in the lineup will help the cause. Seniors Bernard Mitambo (Sr., DeLaSalle, Minn.), Robert Becker (Sr., Hopkins, Minn.), Sam Teitelbaum (Sr., Stillwater, Minn.), and Andrew Lutz (Sr., Pine City, Minn.) have been mainstays in the Hamline lineup for three years now and have high goals for the upcoming season. Along with this quartet, senior Brendan FitzPatrick (Sr., White Bear Lake, Minn.) is poised to make a mark in the doubles lineup as well.  

David Croonquist (Jr., North Oaks, Minn.) had one of the best fall seasons in Hamline history losing in the quarterfinals of the ITA Tournament in both singles and doubles. He opens up the season ranked #15 in the region in singles. He and Becker are ranked #16 in the region for doubles.  

Several players in their second year at Hamline are looking to compete of spots in the lineup as well. Connor Hart (So., Dellwood, Minn.), Derek Lutz (So., Pine City, Minn.), and Robert Johnson (So., Elk River, Minn.) had some experience playing the lineup last year and now know what it takes to compete in the MIAC. Dylan Sperry (So., Scandia, Minn.) and Tyler Antil (So., Fridley, Minn.) are continually improving their games and fitness and are looking very sharp early on in the season.  

The 2012 season will reflect the attitude and leadership of the upperclassmen. As it has been for a while now, every team in the MIAC is solid top to bottom and every match will be tough. It should make for some epic finishes and a great season.  

The first test is tonight when the Pipers face Wis-La Crosse at the U of Minnesota. The match begins at 6:00 p.m.