The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

Coach happy with improvements

The Eastern men’s and women’s tennis teams were in action at the SIU-C Saluki Invitational held in Carbondale on Sunday.

Along with the Panthers, the SIU-C Saluki Invitational featured Southern Illinois-Carbondale and Saint Louis University.

In men’s doubles, junior Matyas Hilgert and senior Vance Davis defeated Dave Welkener and Nishad Balachadran of Saint Louis 8-6. Hilgert and Davis continued their winning ways by defeating Jordan Snyder and Orhan Spahic of SIU-C.

Junior Jamie Firth and freshman Volodymyr Zverkovsky also recorded a win for Eastern by defeating Pavlo Buryi and Rafael Cuadrillero of SIU-C 8-2.

Later, Firth and Zverkovsky were defeated 8-5 by Drew Feder and Patrick Kella of Saint Louis.

Sophomore Warren Race and freshman Kevin Bauman were defeated by Bobby Kidera and Joe Flanagan of Saint Louis by a score of 9-8.

In singles play against Saint Louis, Hilgert, Race and Zverkovsky all managed wins over SLU opponents.

Against SIU-C, Race and Bauman were the only Panther players able to pull out a victory.

Eastern head coach John Blackburn said he was very pleased with the men’s performance.

“I think the men’s team made a big improvement from their first two tournaments,” Blackburn said. “We competed pretty well in a lot of positions.”

Blackburn said he was pleased with the performances of Race and Bauman in singles and Davis and Hilgert in doubles.

In women’s doubles, junior Amanda Dibbs and freshman Jennifer Kim managed an 8-6 victory over SIU-C players Anita Lee and Anastacia Simon.

Eastern freshman Janelle Prisner and sophomore Merrit Whitely were unable to get wins over either SIU-C or SLU opponents.

In women’s singles, Prisner lost to SLU’s Hallie Elmore, but defeated Melanie Delsart of Southern Illinois.

Kim defeated Jennifer Dien of Southern Illinois, while Dibbs defeated Anastacia Simon of Southern Illinois.

Blackburn said he was happy with the women’s performance.

“The women had a good finish,” Blackburn said. “They played well in the last round. They also had some other good wins sprinkled in throughout the day also, but I was just really happy with the way they finished.”

The women finished by winning their last three out of four matches against SIU-C.

Blackburn said the biggest thing that the team could be working on is to stay mentally tough during its offseason workouts and have them carry over into to spring where they really matter.

On Oct. 21, Notre Dame will host the men’s ITA Regionals in South Bend, Ind. Michigan will host the women’s ITA Regionals in Ann Arbor, Mich., which only a few of the Panthers will be competing in.

The ITA Regionals will mark the last time the Eastern tennis team will compete until a match against OVC foe Southern Illinois-Edwardsville on Jan. 29.

Dominic Renzetti can be reached at 581-7944 or [email protected].

Coach happy with improvements

Coach happy with improvements

Senior Jeff Rutherford returns a serve during the match against Tennessee State on April 3 at Darling Courts. (File Photo


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