TULSA, Okla. – Three Creighton men’s tennis players combined to win five singles matches during the first day of the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) Central Region Championship hosted by the University of Tulsa on Thursday.
CU junior Elliott Baker along with sophomores Quinn Dippel and Brandon Lee all participated in the men’s singles qualifying draw. Participants must win three rounds of matches to continue at the tournament and qualify for the 64-man singles main draw.
All three Bluejays recorded first-round wins to advance to the second round of the draw. Baker defeated Allen Parker of Oral Roberts in three sets 6-4, 2-6, 10-7. Lee claimed a two-set 6-1, 7-5 victory over Yehia El-Sallaly of Saint Louis to open the day. Dippel knocked off Pat Gaffigan of SIUE 6-3, 7-5 to advance to the next round.
Later in the day, two Jays kept their chances alive to claim one of the eight singles main draw qualifying slots. Baker fought through a tough first set against Andres Estenssoro of Iowa at 7-6 before rolling 6-2 in the second. Lee doubled up Jason Mechalli of Oral Roberts with a 6-4, 6-4 victory to advance to the third round.
Dippel dropped a 6-4, 6-2 result to Dominic Patrick in his second round qualifying match.
Creighton senior Billy Paluch and freshman Jake Norman already occupy a spot in the singles main draw based on pre-tournament rankings.
ITA Central Region Championship Qualifying men’s singles matches will begin at 8 AM CT to begin day two at the University of Tulsa. Main draw doubles matches are also slated to begin in the morning.