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Tennis team clinches spot in conference tournament

The Golden Eagle tennis team celebrated senior day and wrapped up its regular season by defeating the Omaha Mavericks in a 7-0 shutout at the Philcrest Hills Tennis Center on Saturday.

“The team was on their game. We were able to come out and win the doubles point which boosted our confidence going into singles [and] helped us roll over them,” said junior Michael Sosnowski. “We had a lot of great energy, which is great for the whole team and it is a great way to end the regular season.”

ORU, now 13-10 overall, has won seven of its last 10 matches. It is currently third in conference standings behind Denver and IUPUI.

“[The] team performance was brilliant,” said sophomore from Croatia Jan Pehnec. “Every single one of us got out on the court and did their job, from doubles to singles.”

Sosnowski and senior Braxton Bates started the team off with a 6-2 doubles win. The duo is 12-4 on the season and 9-1 in the last 10 matches going into the conference tournament.

Sosnowski continued his winning streak with a fourth straight singles vic- tory. He leads the team with 14 wins.

“I played quite well, being able to put myself in positions to win every game in the set during singles,” said Sosnowski. “Braxton played great in doubles and we were able to win the match fast and add to the team’s confidence.”

Freshman Barnabas Koncz also continued his dominance in singles competition by winning his 12th match of the season.

Pehnec, second on the team for personal wins, completed his 13th singles victory this season with a 6-0 defeat of Omaha’s Matt Dunn in both matches.

“I personally think I did really good this season. We had a lot of hard matches against some top schools like Oklahoma State, Arkansas, etc. and a lot of traveling, so it wasn’t easy,” Pehnec said. “I was trying to beat my [win] record from last year, and right now I’m even. But I still have some matches before the end of the season and I’m expecting to beat it.”

The Golden Eagles will head to Omaha, Nebraska for the Summit League Championship on April 29-30 where they are vying for a championship. The team has not finished in the top three since 2010.

“We have a week and a half to prepare for the Summit League,” Sosnowski said. “We know it’s going to be tough to come out with the championship, but after playing each team in [the] conference, we know what to expect and know we can pull it off.”

Story by Jadyn Watson-Fisher, Photo by Abby Friedman

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