Men’s Tennis starts the season on a high note at home

The Bradley Braves men’s tennis team opened with a 30-5 singles record to begin the 2011-12 season after hosting a round-robin style tournament last weekend.

“We didn’t lose a match from the fifth through eighth flight to an opponent,” coach Jesse Plote said. “The depth is scary and we’ll see this [upcoming] weekend how deep we really are.”

Last Friday, Bradley went 16-0 in the Hotels at Grand Prairie Invitational against  DePauw, Lewis, Southern Indiana and Valparaiso, losing only one set total between its nine players.

Although Bradley was nearly flawless  on Friday, the Braves went 11-9 in doubles  Saturday  morning at the Clubs at River City leaving room for improvement.

“We put new partners together and we didn’t step up to the challenge,” Plote said.

Sunday, Bradley went 10-3 in singles, including freshman Ahmed Al Bitar’s win over his sophomore  teammate Arthur Romanet, 6-2, 3-6 and 10-5.

Four Braves went undefeated in singles action during the tournament: Al Bitar, sophomores Justin Abrams and Kevin Keiner and junior Juan Cuadrado.

“It was a learning start to the year,” Plote said. “We did well results-wise, but I am not happy that we went into so many 10-point tiebreakers. All five of those [matches] that we lost were in 10-point tiebreakers.”

Bradley returns to action this weekend hosting another round-robin format tournament against Green Bay, IUPUI, Saint Louis and South Dakota State.

“We are looking forward to this weekend, and building off of last week,” Plote said.