Oct. 22, 2010
SOUTH BEND, Ind. – The NIU men’s tennis team finished up its fall season today at the ITA Midwest Regionals. The Huskies lone singles player left, Maksym Bartiuk dropped a tough three-set decision, 3-6, 6-4, 6-0 to MAC-foe Pablo Olivarez of Western Michigan in the first round.
“We were in that match, but we just couldn’t get the third set,” said NIU head coach Patrick Fisher. “That was a tough one going into the doubles later in the day.”
The early singles loss in the day set the tone for the doubles matches as Bartiuk and Maksym Lagutin were defeated 8-1 by the Michigan pair of Justin Rossi and Barrett Franks. Roman Turtygin and Maximilian Phillips also dropped an 8-1 decision in doubles play to the 10th-seeded pair in the draw, Josh Graves and Spencer Wolf of Northwestern.
Although he was disappointed with the results, Fisher was still encouraged with how his group played. “Overall, we were in a lot matches,” Fisher said. “This was the first regional event for these guys so the experience level may have played a factor. There were a lot of great schools – Ohio State, Michigan, Northwestern, Notre Dame. Those are all top ranked schools; it’s one of the tougher regionals out there.”
With about three months to regroup and prepare for a very difficult spring season, Fisher believes having competed against the quality his squad has during the fall has allowed them to recognize what work still needs to be done.
“The most important thing that we have to do is be able to raise our level and continue to have a high level of intensity.” Fisher said. “We’re going to play a lot of these teams [that we’ve played in the fall], which is good for us. We know what we need to work on and our guys are eager to get back and work hard. We’re anticipating a great spring. We’re going to be challenged, but our guys up for it.”
The Huskies will begin the spring season on Jan. 22 at Dayton.
Singles Main Draw
Pablo Olivarez (Western Michigan) def. Maksym Bartiuk (NIU), 3-6, 6-4, 6-0
Doubles Main Draw
Justin Rossi/Barrett Franks (Michigan) def. Maksym Bartiuk/Maksym Lagutin (NIU), 8-1
Josh Graves/Specener Wolf (Northwestern) def. Roman Turtygin/Maximilian Phillips (NIU), 8-1