Tennis Streak Snapped
April 11, 2014
Monmouth College Photo / Doubles partners, David Johnson and David Stewart hold a 14-5 record this season.
After a five match winning streak the Monmouth College men’s tennis team was cut down by University of Wisconsin-Whitewater in all nine contests. In particular reigning Midwest Conference doubles champions, David Johnson and David Stewart were defeated in the first time in nine matches by Jake Humphreys and Byron Balkin.
Even though it ended in a loss the all-time Scots doubles win leaders did not go down without a fight, defeated by a score of 8-5. “The doubles match against Wisconsin-Whitewater was by far our toughest match of the year,” said Johnson. “They were a top 4 doubles team in the Central Region. This was good for us because we learned a lot from this tough match and what we need to continue to do to be successful this year. It was good for us to play some of the top players in the nation heading into conference season.” Stewart and Johnson were the lone Scots to capture conference titles last year in first doubles.
Looking ahead Monmouth has four crucial conference matchups in Grinnell College, Cornell College, Illinois College and Knox College. Johnson has the highest winning percentage of number two players in the conference, and Stewart and Marco Franco are third, in number three and number four positions, respectively.
“We are definitely heading in the right direction to where we want to be at the end of the year,” said Johnson. “We are on our way to playing our best tennis of the year as a team and it could not come at a better time. We still need to take care of business against some conference opponents to make sure we are in the team conference championships but I have no doubts that we will get there and will be ready.”
Monmouth has not won a men’s tennis title since 1938, although they’ve shown up in the top three in the past three seasons. Grinnell on the other hand owns a dynasty, winning every title in the last decade and odds on favorites again in 2014.
The conference tournament will take place in two weeks at the Neilsen Tennis Center in Madison, Wis., home court of the DI University of Wisconsin Badgers. The Scots also have finished their home matches this season, which is a shame because at home they went an untarnished, 3-0.