Lions Head to Iowa for First Road Trip of Season
After an opening day loss to Pacific at home, LMU Men's Tennis will face Illinois State and Iowa on the road this weekend.
Jan. 24, 2013
LOS ANGELES -- After a tough opening loss to Pacific last Saturday, the Lions look to bounce back this weekend with a trip to Iowa City, Iowa. LMU faces Illinois State this Saturday, Jan. 26 in a neutral site match before facing host Iowa on Sunday.
Pacific took an early lead after winning two out of three doubles matches to earn one point in doubles play. On court one, senior Nicholas Bjerke and junior Sebastian Bustamante were the first to finish their match, winning 8-6. After jumping out to an early lead on court three, junior Daniel Simko and sophomore Felix Van Kann could not hold on to secure the victory as they fell 8-6 in the end. The final and deciding match came on court two, where redshirt senior Jack Zapala and LMU newcomer freshman Cristobal Rivera lost a close 8-6 battle, conceding the point to Pacific.
With the score tied at 3-3, the match would come down to Rivera. Rivera joined the Lions only a short time ago, enrolling in LMU for the spring semester. His eligibility status was not yet cleared until the day before the match. Nevertheless, Rivera would play in the deciding match in both the doubles and singles round. The match was close for all three sets with the freshmen fighting all the way to the finish. Unfortunately, Rivera came up just sort, losing 2-6, 6-3, 4-6.
ABOUT ILLINOIS STATE
THIS YEAR’S SQUAD
Junior Daniel Simko finished 12-13 in singles play at the number five and six spots in 2012 and posted an 11-16 record in doubles matches in 2012. Sophomores Todd Volmari, Felix Van Kann and Robin Kiyabu gained valuable experience and wins during their first campaigns.
Joining the team this year are sophomore transfer Othar Kordsachia from Denver University and freshman Cristobal Rivera. Kordsachia went 16-17 in singles matches at the number four, five, and six spots and went 16-18 in doubles matches in 2012 at Denver. Rivera had a distinguished high school career at Santa Monica High School where he was a four-year varsity letter winner and captained his team to three consecutive league titles and two-time CIF finals while also being a CIF individual runner-up and going undefeated during his senior year.
HEAD COACH Brad Sceney
Sceney has led the Lions to three straight fifth-place finishes in the WCC. Overall in the five years that Sceney has been at LMU, the Lions have finished 5th in 2012, 2011 and 2010, 6th in 2009 and 5th in 2008. The Lions were 10-14 overall and 3-4 in conference last season.
ASSISTANT COACH Aaron Paajanen
From 2002-2004, Aaron played tennis at Point Loma University where he was team captain and held a career winning percentage of .780. After finishing his collegiate career, Paajanen briefly played the ITF/USTA pro circuit before going into full time coaching.
IN THE SPOTLIGHT
At LMU’s “Kids Days” matches, families are invited to attend a free collegiate men’s tennis match at the LMU Tennis Center. Free pizza and drinks will be provided and at the conclusion of the match, the LMU men’s tennis team will conduct a free kids clinic for those in attendance. This season’s “Kids Day” matches included the season opener against future West Coast Conference member the University of the Pacific and will also include Saturday, Match 24 versus Sacramento State; Saturday, April 13 versus Saint Mary’s; and Saturday, April 20 versus BYU. The remaining three matches will begin at 1:30 p.m. For more information about LMU “Kids Days” contact head coach Brad Sceney at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- GO LIONS -