A quartet of Valparaiso University student-athletes were recognized on Thursday as the Summit League unveiled its 2018 Commissioner’s List of Academic Excellence. Two athletes from each of Valpo’s sports that participate in the conference – men’s tennis and men’s swimming – received the high academic honor.
Athletes from the Valparaiso University men’s tennis and men’s swimming programs were recognized for their excellence in the classroom on Tuesday as the Summit League announced its 2017-2018 academic honor roll.
The Valparaiso University men’s tennis team saw its quest for a third consecutive NCAA Tournament berth come up one win short with a 4-1 loss to Drake on Saturday afternoon at Gates Tennis Center in Denver, Colo. The match was closer than the final score would indicate as the two singles matches that went unfinished and the final matchup to reach completion were all tightly contested. The Crusaders (9-11) gave the Summit League regular season champion Bulldogs all they could handle in a well-played championship match.
Thrilling victories in league tournament matches have become nothing out of the ordinary for the Valparaiso University men’s tennis program. The Crusaders are back in a league championship match for the fourth consecutive season after a heart-stopping 4-3 victory over four-time defending Summit League champion Denver on Friday night at Gates Tennis Center in Colorado. Sophomore Daniel Langston (Ponca City, Okla. / Ponca City) played the role of hero, coming from down 5-1 to take a pressure-packed third set, snapping a 3-3 deadlock and igniting Valpo’s celebration.
The Valparaiso University men’s tennis program will keep the bulk of its team intact with only one senior set to walk across the stage at next month’s graduation. But the lone senior is one who will leave behind a lasting legacy on Valpo tennis. Garrett Gardner (Poland, Ohio / Poland) was recognized by head coach Jim Daugherty on Saturday during a 4-3 Senior Day win over the University of Chicago, a team ranked third nationally in Division III.
The Valparaiso University men’s tennis team closed out regular season Summit League action on Saturday evening with a 6-1 loss to first-place Drake at Roger Knapp Tennis Center in Des Moines, Iowa. The Crusaders finished at 4-2 in league play and have secured a spot in the upcoming Summit League Tournament.