2012 MIAC Men's And Women's Tennis Playoffs
Gustavus Claims MIAC Men's Playoff Title
The Gustavus men's tennis team earned an automatic berth to the NCAA Championship by winning the 2012 MIAC Playoff Title with impressive wins over St. Thomas, 5-1 in the semifinals, and Carleton, 5-0 in the championship match on Saturday night in St. Peter, Minn. The Gusties defended last year’s playoff title, improving to 20-7, and achieved their fifth MIAC postseason championship since the tournament began in 2007.
The Gusties, who were the No. 1 seed in the playoff tournament, received a bye on the first day and opened play against St. Thomas on Saturday afternoon.The Tommies advanced to the semifinals with a 5-2 win over Macalester on Friday. Gustavus started the day with wins over St. Thomas at No. 1 and 3 doubles, both by scores of 8-3. The Tommies took No. 2 doubles with an 8-6 decision by Brendon O’Connell and Allen-Michael Muench. In singles play, Juan Luis Chu made quick work of O’Connell at the No. 3 spot, 6-1, 6-0. Mya Smith-Dennis followed suit with a 6-1, 6-4 victory at No. 2 and Amrik Donkena sent the Gusties into the title match with a 6-2, 6-1 win at the top singles spot.
Carleton started its day with a pair of doubles victories. Peter Dunn and Paul Cooper edged Macalester’s Andy Catania and John Wright 9-8 at the No. 1 spot, while Austin Jiang and Andrew Hwang tallied an 8-2 win at the No. 3 position. McCoy Becker (No. 6) and Dunn (No. 1) gave the Knights a 4-1 lead, but St. Olaf didn’t go quietly. At the No. 2 spot, Wright battled back from a 6-1 first set loss to Avery Rux to claim the next two 7-6, 6-3, cutting the St. Olaf deficit to two. The match was then claimed at the No. 3 slot as Austin Jiang defeated Stephen Nolan 6-4, 0-6, 6-3.
In the championship match, Gustavus faced Carleton in the re-match of the 2011 championship, when the Gusties defeated the Knights and advanced to the NCAA Tournament. The Gusties started Saturday’s title match with a clean sweep in doubles. No. 1 and 2 were 8-4 decisions, while the No. 3 spot was claimed by Joey MacGibbon and Bradley Entwistle in a 9-8 tiebreaker.
In singles draw, the Gusties received two straight-set victories from Chu (No. 3) and MacGibbon (No. 5) to secure the title. Chu defeated Jiang 6-2, 6-1, while MacGibbon defeated Cooper 6-2, 6-0.
The Gusties will find out on Monday who and where they will play in the first round of the NCAA Regional Championships.
Carleton Tops Gustavus For First MIAC Playoff Title
For the first time in the six-year history of the MIAC Women’s Tennis Playoffs, Gustavus did not claim the title. After defeating the Gusties 5-4 for the MIAC regular title on April 29, the Carleton Knights responded with a 5-3 decision over defending champion Gustavus on Saturday night in St. Peter, Minn. The Knights will enter the NCAA Regional Championships with an overall record of 18-5.
Both Carleton and Gustavus breezed through the semifinals with decisions of 5-0 each. The Gusties shut out St. Olaf with a clean sweep in doubles play and a pair of wins at No. 2 and 3 singles. Megan Gaard (No. 2) and Laurel Krebsbach (No. 3) tallied the two singles victories for Gustavus in straight sets. Each Gustie doubles victory was won by at least five games. Carleton matched Gustavus with a doubles sweep and wins at No. 2 and 3 singles. Bridget Doyle (No. 2) and Anne Lombardi (No. 3) claimed the Knights’ singles victories in straight sets.
In the championship match, Carleton jumped out to a 2-1 lead with a pair of victories at the No. 1 and 2 doubles slots. Kathryn Schmidt and Erin Gudul topped Gaard and Krebsbach 8-4, while Doyle and Lombardi teamed up to defeat Alex Erickson and Megan Born 8-6. The Gusties’ No. 3 team of Annie Mahoney and Mary Roop won a 9-7 tiebreaker over Molly Hemes and Katherine Greeberg.
Gaard knotted the score at 2-2 to start singles play with a 6-1, 6-2 win over Doyle at the No. 2 spot. The Knights regained the advantage, though, as Gudul defeated Born at No. 4., but once again the Gusties tied the score at 3-3 after Krebsbach beat Lombardi at No. 3. With the match-up down to three singles matches, each in the third set, Carleton grinded out wins at No. 1 (Schmidt over Erickson 4-6, 6-3, 6-2) and No. 5 (Hemes over Roop 6-4, 5-7, 6-4). The Gusties finish their 2012 campaign with a 17-9 record.
Saturday's Men's Quarterfinals Set
Friday's semifinal matches started out with No. 3 St. Olaf defeating No. 6 Saint John’s 6-3 . The Johnnies started out the match by claiming two of the three doubles matches, but the Oles took control when singles play was forced inside the Swanson Tennis Center due to rain. Stephen Nolan made quick work at the No. 3 spot, winning 6-2, 6-0 over Joe Laue. At the No. 2 position, Knute Gunderson and Ian Hansen traded 6-4 decisions through the first two sets, but Gunderson earned the victory with a 10-8 super-breaker in the third. Andy Catania sent the Oles into the semifinals with a 6-3, 6-3 win over Connor Rust at the No. 4 spot.
The Oles improve to 15-3 and will face No. 2 Carleton on Saturday at 11:30 a.m. Carleton claimed the regular season match 7-2 on April 18 in Northfield, Minn.
No. 4 St. Thomas defeated No. 5 Macalester in a decision 5-2 in the day's other semifinal contest. The Tommies swept doubles play and didn’t give up more than four games in each match. Macalester bounced back with wins at No. 1 and No. 2 singles thanks to Chris Fowler and Evan Elderbrock, respectively, but the Tommies closed the door with victories at the No. 3 and 5 spots, earning their fourth and fifth point. Brendon O’Connell defeated Stephen Tyndel 6-3, 7-5 at No. 3 and Allen-Michael Muench pushed the Tommies into the semifinals with a 6-2, 7-5 decision over Lewis Wilcox at the No. 5 spot.
St. Thomas improves to 11-5 and will face top-seeded Gustavus on Saturday at 11:30 a.m. Gustavus shut out the Tommies 9-0 in the regular season on April 22.
Women's Quarterfinals Set For Saturday
No. 3 St. Olaf defeated No. 6 St. Catherine 8-1. The Oles cruised to straight-set victories in all six singles matches. The lone victory for the Wildcats came at No. 2 doubles as Maria Koval and Angie Lorenzen defeated Julia Ellis and Kristi Kroker 8-1.
St. Olaf improves to 11-3 overall and will now face off against No. 2 Gustavus on Saturday at 9:00 a.m. The Gusties shut out the Oles 9-0 earlier this season on April 26 in St. Peter.
No. 5 St. Thomas edged No. 4 Saint Benedict 5-4 in the day's other quarterfinal match. In doubles action, the Tommies claimed victories at the No. 1 and No. 3 spots.
The ensuing singles matches proved to be strong at the top for St. Thomas, while the Blazers picked up wins from Megan Seipel at No. 4 singles, Jamie Hoffman at No. 5, and Alicia Vargas at No. 6. In the final match of the day, St. Thomas’ Mary Allen and Saint Ben’s’ Aly Brandell battled to a third set where Allen came out on top 6-4, sending her squad to Saturday’s semifinals. The Tommies also got wins from Rachel Wright and Kara Lefsrud at No. 2 and No. 3, respectively.
St. Thomas will square off against top-seeded Carleton on Saturday at 9:00 a.m. The Knights won the regular season match 8-1 against the Tommies on April 21 in Northfield, Minn.
For the first time in the six-year history of the MIAC Women's Tennis Playoffs, defending tournament champion Gustavus will not be the No. 1 seed. Carleton - which was the runner-up to the Gusties both in the 2011 regular season and postseason - beat Gustavus 5-4 Sunday to claim the 2012 MIAC regular season championship and the No. 1 seed in the Playoffs, ending the Gusties amazing run of 20-straight conference titles.
In recent years, the Knights had closed the gap on Gustavus, leading to Sunday's win with the MIAC regular season title on the line. Carleton had beaten Gustavus earlier this season in a nonconference match, but Sunday's victory was even bigger as the Knights will open as the top seed and favorite at the MIAC Playoffs this weekend, May 4-5. Carleton is 16-5 overall and finished MIAC play with a perfect 10-0 record.
The Gusties will be the No. 2 seed at the tournament with a 16-8 overall record and a 9-1 mark in MIAC play. The loss Sunday was just the second MIAC setback for head coach Jon Carlson, who has a remarkable 219-2 coaching record in conference play. Though they're the second-seed for the first time, Gustavus is still the five-time defending MIAC Playoff champion - in fact, no other team has ever won the event - and the Gusties will have home-court advantage as the tournament's host.
St. Olaf (10-3, 7-3 MIAC) and Saint Benedict (12-7, 7-3 MIAC) tied for third place in the conference standings with identical 7-3 conference records. The Oles, by virtue of their 5-4 win over the Blazers on March 30, claimed the tournament's No. 3 seed and CSB will be the fourth seed. St. Thomas (10-7, 6-4 MIAC) is seeded fifth and St. Catherine (12-7, 5-5 MIAC) used a win in its final regular-season match to separate itself from Concordia and Saint Mary's to grab the sixth and final seed.
The postseason action begins Friday in St. Peter with No. 3 St. Olaf meeting No. 6 St. Catherine in one quarterfinal, and No. 4 Saint Benedict will take on No. 5 St. Thomas in the other, with both matches starting at noon. The semifinals and finals will both be held Saturday, with No. 1 Carleton facing the lowest remaining seed and No. 2 Gustavus taking on the highest remaining seed, both at 9 a.m.
The two semifinal winners will meet in the championship match Saturday at approximately 2:30 p.m. The winner of the 2012 MIAC Women's Tennis Playoffs will receive the MIAC's automatic bid to the 2012 NCAA Division III Women's Tennis Tournament. The MIAC has a home page for the event, and Gustavus will provide live results throughout the tournament.
The Gustavus men's tennis team continued an impressive dynasty, running the table to capture its 24th-straight MIAC regular season championship. The Gusties will look to add another conference title to its tremendous season this weekend as the top seed in the 2012 MIAC Men's Tennis Playoffs.
Gustavus - which is the defending postseason champ as well and winner of four of the five MIAC Playoff titles - had another terrific regular season under head coach Tommy Valentini. The Gusties went 18-7 overall and a perfect 9-0 in MIAC play to win the championship and take the tournament's top seed. In fact, Gustavus won all nine of its conference matches either 9-0 or 8-1. The Gusties will again be the host of the MIAC postseason tournament, which will be held Friday and Saturday, May 4-5.
Carleton (20-4, 8-1 MIAC) enjoyed a 20-win regular season and defeated every MIAC opponent except Gustavus to claim second place in the conference and the tournament's No. 2 seed. St. Olaf (14-3, 7-2 MIAC) lost just three times in the regular season and will be the Playoffs' No. 3 seed and St. Thomas will enter the postseason seeded fourth with a 10-5 overall record and a 6-3 mark in MIAC play.
Macalester (9-10, 4-5 MIAC) and Saint John's (6-11, 4-5 MIAC) round out the six-team postseason field. The two tied for fifth place with identical 4-5 records in conference play, with the Scots grabbing the No. 5 seed thanks to their narrow 5-4 win over the Johnnies Saturday to close out the regular season. SJU will be the tournament's No. 6 seed.
The postseason action begins Friday in St. Peter with No. 3 St. Olaf meeting No. 6 Saint John's in one quarterfinal, and No. 4 St. Thomas will take on No. 5 Macalester in the other, with both matches starting at 3 p.m. The semifinals and finals will both be held Saturday, with No. 1 Gustavus facing the lowest remaining seed and No. 2 Carleton taking on the highest remaining seed, both at 11:30 a.m.The two semifinal winners will meet in the championship match Saturday at approximately 4 p.m. The winner of the 2012 MIAC Men's Tennis Playoffs will receive the MIAC's automatic bid to the 2012 NCAA Division III Men's Tennis Tournament. The MIAC has a home page for the event, and Gustavus will provide live results throughout the tournament.
Schedule Of Events
Quarterfinals: Friday, May 4, 2012
No. 3 St. Olaf vs. No. 6 Saint John's, 3 p.m.
No. 4 St. Thomas vs. No. 5 Macalester, 3 p.m.
Semifinals: Saturday, May 5, 2012
No. 1 Gustavus vs. lowest remaining seed, 11:30 a.m.
No. 2 Carleton vs. highest remaining seed, 11:30 a.m.
Championship: Saturday, May 5, 2012
Semifinal winners, 4 p.m.
Quarterfinals: Friday, May 4, 2012
No. 3 St. Olaf vs. No. 6 St. Catherine, 12 p.m.
No. 4 Saint Benedict vs. No. 5 St. Thomas, 12 p.m.
Semifinals: Saturday, May 5, 2012
No. 1 Carleton vs. lowest remaining seed, 9 a.m.
No. 2 Gustavus vs. highest remaining seed, 9 a.m.
Championship: Saturday, May 5, 2012
Semifinal winners, 2:30 p.m.