INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – The Goshen College men's tennis team saw its official season come to an end on Tuesday, falling to third-seeded Marian University 5-3 in the Crossroads League Tournament Quarterfinals. The match was played indoors at the West Indy Racquet Club due to the weather.
"This was a difficult, disappointing loss for the team as we all thought we had a good draw with a good chance to come away with a win," 14th-year head coach Stan King admitted. He added that the Knights had defeated Goshen 6-3, but it was without one of their key players, freshman Balazs Pirot. "This time, we had Balazs. Furthermore, our top six players were all in the lineup for the first time this season."
With the full lineup intact, the Maple Leafs were able to split the singles action 3-3 - the teams started with singles play due to the indoor venue. Marian jumped to a 3-1 lead with wins at No. 3, No. 4 and No. 5 with senior Csaba Laszlo winning his seventh-straight dual match 6-3, 6-2 at No. 1 to get Goshen on the board.
Then, came a pair of marathon matches that got the Leafs back in it. Pirot and junior Krishnan Ganesan both came from behind to win their matches at No. 2 and No. 5, respectively, to knot the score heading to doubles action.
"Krishnan took a long, hard-fought 7-6 (3), 7-5 win from an opponent who was previously undefeated in Crossroads League play at the No. 5 position," King explained. "Balazs was on the court for an even longer time as he won a three-setter 6-3, 6-7 (7-5), 6-4. Both Krishnan and Balazs had to come back from early first set deficits, 0-4 for Krishnan and 0-3 for Balazs."
Marian inched closer to advancing to the conference semifinals when they jumped to a 5-2 lead at No. 1 doubles and did not look back, clinching the fourth team point with an 8-4 win.
"At about that time, out No. 2 doubles team was tied at four and our No. 3 team had a 6-3 lead so things were still looking very hopeful for a Goshen team win," King added. "However, I believe Marian's early success at No.1 was noted by its other two doubles teams, giving them a psychological boost and perhaps easing the pressure for winning just one more match."
The Knights capitalized on the momentum, winning four of the last five games at No. 2 and all three of the remaining games completed at No. 3, a match that was called after the team win was secured.
"Though we loss this match, I really liked the way our guys competed and gave it their all, especially considering some recent illness and injury," King concluded.
The Maple Leafs finish the season 5-7 overall. They will host Hesston College on October 13 for an exhibition, but official play has been completed.
Marian 5, Goshen 3
1. Csaba Laszlo (G) def Ryan Heuer 6-3, 6-2
2. Balazs Pirot (G) def Jason Denton 6-3, 6-7(5-7), 6-4
3. Andrew Voss (M) def Jon Kaasa 6-4, 6-4
4. Mitchell Trammel (M) def Vasanth Palanisamy 6-4, 6-3
5. Krishnan Ganesan (G) def Tyler Scanlan 7-6(3), 7-5
6. Jack Hiatt (M) def Thiago Amaral 6-1, 6-2
1. Will Dixon/Voss (M) def Laszlo/Pirot 8-4
2. Trammel/Scanlan (M) def Kaasa/Daniel Buschert 8-5
3. Palanisamy/Ganesan vs Denton/Nick Batuello (match called with score at 6-6)