PHILADELPHIA – The Lehigh men’s tennis team opened its fall season with a solid showing at the Penn Invitational which wrapped-up Sunday on the Hamlin Tennis Courts and Levy Pavilion. Seven Mountain Hawks competed in seven singles brackets and two doubles brackets as one of 16 teams in attendance at the three-day event.
Sophomore Ben Gilman was the only Lehigh player to progress through to Sunday as he rebounded from an opening round loss on Friday to reach the consolation final in the Penn Flight, the top flight in the tournament. Gilman lost his first round match in a ten-point super-tiebreak to Vusa Hove but battled back to win two matches on Saturday, including a 6-7, 7-6, 10-7 win over Matt Hagan, the top player from Iowa. In Sunday’s consolation final, Gilman dropped a 3-6, 6-2, 6-0 decision to Jonas Dierckx of Iowa.
Four Mountain Hawks won their opening round matches on Friday, including sophomore Mitchell Petersen, who defeated Dan Davies of Princeton 7-5, 3-6, 10-8 in the Quaker Flight, before dropping his quarterfinal match to Troy Beneck of Delaware 7-6, 6-7, 10-4.
Senior captain Andrew Krentz disposed of Fraser Croad of NJIT in straight sets in the first round of the Hamlin flight, before bowing out against Joey White of Iowa in a super-tiebreak in the second round.
Both of Lehigh’s freshmen won singles matches in the Blue Flight, led by Jeremy Kochman, who won his first two matches in straight sets, before losing to Pierre Brondeau of Saint Joseph’s, once again on a ten point super-tiebreak, in the semifinal round. Ricardo Prince also won his first match, downing Shaheed Swift of Norfolk State 6-4, 6-3 before falling to Dan Barrus of Saint Joseph’s.
Others who competed for the Mountain Hawks included junior Timur Chernykh in the Ben Franklin Flight and sophomore DJ Goldblum in the Red Flight.
Lehigh teams went 1-3 in doubles action. Gilman and Petersen lost in a tiebreak, 9-8 (5) to a team from Saint Joseph’s in the opening round at Flight A. Krentz and Chernykh registered a first-round win over a team from NJIT before being eliminated by a team from Iowa. Goldblum and Kochman were Lehigh’s third doubles team while Prince was part of a mixed team with Paul Stauskas of Drexel.
The Mountain Hawks will return to the court October 12-14 when they host the Lehigh Invitational on the Ulrich Varsity Courts and Inside the Lewis Tennis Center.
Penn Flight – Ben Gilman
L Vusa Hove (Buffalo) 6-1, 6-7, 10-2
W Andres Rosa (Saint Francis, Pa.) 6-0, 6-3
W Matt Hagan (Iowa) 6-7, 7-6, 10-7
L Jonas Dierckx (Iowa) 3-6, 6-2, 6-0
Quaker Flight – Mitchell Petersen
W Dan Davies (Princeton) 7-5, 3-6, 10-8
L Troy Beneck (Delaware) 7-6 (5), 6-7 (4), 10-4
Levy Flight – Matt Savran withdrew due to injury
Hamlin Flight – Andrew Krentz
W Fraser Croad (NJIT) 6-3, 6-4
L Joey White (Iowa) 6-4, 4-6, 10-3
Ben Franklin Flight – Timur Chernykh
L Mohamed El Tronbari (Princeton) 6-7, 6-4, 10-8
L Jason Simon (Buffalo) 3-6, 6-4, 10-8
Red Flight – DJ Goldblum
L Max Montague (Saint Joseph’s) 4-6, 6-1, 10-8
L Jason Shkodnik (Buffalo) 6-4, 7-6 (5)
Blue Flight – Jeremy Kochman
W Stefan Groot (Saint Francis, Pa.) 6-1, 6-1
W Dan Koehler (Drexel) 7-6 (1), 6-2
L Pierre Brondeau (Saint Joseph’s) 6-1, 1-6, 10-8
Blue Flight – Ricardo Prince
W Shaheed Swift (Norfolk State) 6-4, 6-3
L Dan Barrus (Saint Joseph’s) 6-2, 6-2
Flight A – Gilman/Petersen
L Sierra/Veronis (Saint Joseph’s) 9-8 (5)
Flight B – Chernykh/Krentz
W Alban/Croad (NJIT) 8-1
L Patrick/Tomlins (Iowa) 8-1
Flight B – Prince/Paul Stauskas (Drexel)
L Carcione/Richardson (Princeton) 8-3
Flight B – Goldblum/Kochman
L Hansen/Jeganathan (Drexel) 8-6