ST. JOSEPH, Minn. — The Carleton College men’s tennis team trailed after doubles and was tied 3-3 midway through singles before the Knights rallied to win the last three singles matches and defeat Saint John’s University, 6-3. The win moves Carleton to 13-7 overall and gives the Knights a perfect 5-0 conference record.
Andrew Hwang (Jr./Brookfield, Wis./University School) and Erik Johnson (So./Grand Forks, N.D./ Red River) started the match with an 8-5 win at first doubles. The Johnnies then jumped into the lead with 8-6 wins at second and third doubles.
Johnson also played in the top slot in the singles lineup. He brought the Knights even with a strong first singles victory 6-4, 6-3. Coach Stephan Zweifel said "Although Erik can sometimes show as much patience as Kanye West does humility, he was able to work with the windy conditions today and prevail over a very tough conference opponent.”
Mauricio Gonzalez (Jr./La Paz, Bolivia/American Cooperative School) prevailed at fourth singles 6-1, 6-3, but Saint John’s got another victory at the third slot, tying the match at 3-3.
Hwang, Patton McClelland (Fy./Rock Hill, N.C./ The Latin School), and Mark Conrad (Fy./Plymouth, Minn./ Armstrong) decided the match as the trio each won their singles match.
McClelland took the fifth singles match 6-1, 6-2. Hwang was next to step up and delivered the win at second singles with a 7-6 (9-7), 6-4 result to complete his weekend with a 4-0 record. Like the Knights, Conrad rallied for the win at sixth singles. After a first set loss, he grabbed the final win of the day 6-7 (5-7), 6-2, 10-7.
Coach Zweifel offered, "I was very impressed with Mark's composure in such an important MIAC contest. His match was as tight as Kim Kardashian’s jeans, yet he never showed any sign of nerves.”
The Knights return home for a key MIAC match against archrival St. Olaf College on Wednesday April 16 at the Bell Field Courts. That contest begns at 4:00pm