Men’s tennis downed Hope College last Friday 5-1 at Stowe Stadium. With the victory the Hornets will now compete in the NCAA Championship Tournament for the 41st straight season. K is the only program that has competed in all 41 tournaments since its inception in 1976.
The Hornets have been led all season by one singles player Branden Metzler and he led by example again in the match against Hope. Metzler, who is undefeated on the season (19-0), won 8-1 at one doubles with sophomore partner Elan Dantus before double bageling his opponent at one singles. This was the third MIAA one singles match where Metzler has double bageled an opponent this year.
The Hornets aren’t just a one man team however, as Dantus, Bo Hudson K’16, Eric De Witt K’17, And Allen Vinson K’19 have all contributed this year among others. Metzler, Dantus, and Hudson were all selected to the MIAA Men’s Tennis First Team, while De Witt and Vinson were selected to the MIAA Men’s Tennis Second Team. K players took up five of the twelve spots up for honors in this year’s teams of the season.
Metzler also picked up his third straight MIAA Most Valuable Player award, he continues to remain undefeated in all MIAA matches, singles or doubles, throughout his career.
Kalamazoo will play Messiah College (Pa.) in the first round of NCAA Championships. The match will be played at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio. While the date and time has yet to be determined, the Hornets do know they will play Kenyon College the following day if they can win their first match.