The Hobart College tennis team began its spring season with a pair of wins inside Bristol Field House on Saturday, Feb. 27. The Statesmen posted a 6-3 victory over Oneonta before topping Juniata 8-1.
Against the Red Dragons, Hobart fell behind 2-1 at the conclusion of doubles play. Juniors Michael Rusk and Danny Kot defeated Andrew Emanuel and Joseph D’Orazio 8-5 at No. 2 doubles to collect the win for the Statesmen.
Hobart (2-0) notched five singles wins to secure the match. At No. 2 singles, first-year Jonathan Atwater handed D’Orazio his second loss of the day, 6-0, 6-4. Junior Patrick Dunk defeated Nicholas Fox, 6-4, 6-0, at No. 5, while Rusk won 6-1, 6-1 at No. 4. First-year Jonah Salita clinched the match for the Statesmen with a three set victory in the top spot. Salita lost the first set to Michael Nelson before rallying to take the match, 4-6, 6-4, 6-4, with an overhead shot down the line. Sophomore Harry Nichols won his match at No. 3 6-4, 3-6, 6-2.
In the day’s second match, Hobart grabbed a 3-0 lead over Juniata at the conclusion of doubles play. Kot and Rusk earned their second doubles win of the day with an 8-2 win at No. 2 doubles. Salita and Atwater cruised to an 8-3 victory in the top spot, beating the Eagles’ Dean Polisena, Roy Liberman. Nichols and junior Jake Criss grinded out a 9-8(7-5) victory over Juniata’s Bryan Gregory and Owen Grafe.
The Statesmen won five of the six singles matches to remain unbeaten in dual matches. Captains Rusk and Dunk won in straight sets at Nos. 4 and 5 respectively to clinch the match for the Statesmen. Rusk’s 6-2, 6-2 win completed the perfect 4-0 day for the junior. Dunk beat Dan Ansel, 6-0, 6-0. Salita improved to 2-0 in the No. 1 spot with a 6-1, 7-5 victory over Polisena. Atwater and Kot also collected straight set victories for Hobart at Nos. 2 and 6 respectively.
The Statesmen will be back in action on March 11, when they host New York University. The match is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m.