DES MOINES, Iowa – Creighton men’s tennis senior Billy Paluch and freshman Harrison Lang each advanced to the semifinals of their respective flights to lead the Jays at the Roger Knapp Invitational hosted by Drake University this weekend.
With doubles matches wrapped up on Friday, teams focused on singles for the rest of the weekend. Seven Creighton players claimed a singles win this weekend. Four Jays earned multiple wins as freshmen Jake Norman and Aaron Chalstrom joined Lang and Paluch in their success.
Paluch rolled in straight sets in his first two singles matches of Flight A. In the third round, Paluch won in three sets over Drake’s Grant Tesmer. Paluch claimed set one 6-2 before dropping the second stanza 6-4. In the third-set superbreaker, Paluch pulled out a 10-7 decision.
Another Drake Bulldog, Matt Frost, awaited Paluch in the Flight A semifinal on his home court. Frost ended Paluch’s run in the Invitational with a 6-3, 6-4 victory.
In Flight B singles, Lang made his own run to the semis. The freshman rolled in a first-round win over Omaha’s Erik Anderson before being pushed to three sets in round two. Lang won the first set 6-4 over Bryan Miles of Gustavus Adolphus. Miles came back to take the second at 6-3. Lang persevered 10-7 in the third-set superbreaker to advance.
A win by walkover in the third round moved Lang into the Flight B semifinal against Simon Formont of Northern Illinois. Formont earned a first set win at 6-4. Lang evened the match in extra games in the second, 7-5. But Formont earned a 10-6 victory in the deciding superbreaker.
After a first-round setback in Flight B singles, Norman rattled off three straight victories in consolation matches to end the weekend at 3-1. Chalstrom claimed a first-round victory in the Flight B singles main draw. After a second-round loss, Chalstrom secured another victory in consolation play to finish the Invitational at 2-2.
The Creighton men’s and women’s tennis teams host the Omaha Collegiate Invitational next weekend beginning on Friday, Sept. 27 and running through Sunday, Sept. 29.