The 34th-ranked University of Minnesota men's tennis team opened the 2007 dual season last night with a 4-3 win at No. 62 Denver. Led by former DU head coach Geoff Young, the Golden Gophers (1-0) lost the doubles point, but rallied with a 4-2 mark in singles to give Young his first win at Minnesota.
"I'm happy with the way the guys competed," Young said. "They came out on fire after losing the doubles point. It was a great match and a great way to start the season in a tough environment."
The Pioneers (1-1) opened the dual with a 2-1 showing in doubles play. DU's top duo of Adam Holmstrom and Niklas Persson cruised to an 8-1 win at No. 1 over Sion Wilkins and Andres Osorio, before the Golden Gophers got on the board at No. 2 with Mikey Kantar and Raoul Schwark downing Nejc Smole and Ben Althaus, 8-4. Denver clinched the point at No. 3 with 44th-ranked Timo Kienle and Kalle Rosen edging Chi Pham and D.J. Geatz, 8-6.
The Maroon and Gold picked up their play in singles matches with a 4-2 performance to come from behind for the team win. At No. 1, 21st-ranked Holmstrom rolled over 58th-ranked Schwark, 6-1, 6-2, but Minnesota rebounded at No. 2 with 77th-ranked Osorio's 6-4, 6-1 win over Smole.
At Nos. 3 and 6, Minnesota got straight-set wins to set up the showdowns at Nos. 4 and 5 for the dual. Dino Bilankov's 6-4, 6-2 victory over Rosen at No. 6 was his in his first match as a Golden Gopher.
After a three-set Kantar loss at No. 4, Nich Edlefsen played the hero at No. 5, winning a three-set bout. Althaus took the first set 6-2, but Edlefsen rallied with 6-2 and 7-5 wins in the final two sets to give Minnesota the dual victory.
The Golden Gophers continue their season-opening road trip with a dual at Air Force today at 12 p.m., in Colorado Springs, Colo.
#34 Minnesota at #62 Denver
Jan. 27, 2007
1. #21 Adam Holmstrom (DU) def. #58 Raoul Schwark (MINN), 6-1, 6-2
2. #77 Andres Osorio (MINN) def. Nejc Smole (DU), 6-4, 6-1
3. D.J. Geatz (MINN) def. Timo Kienle (DU), 6-2, 6-0
4. Niklas Persson (DU) def. Mikey Kantar (MINN), 6-7, 6-2, 7-6
5. Nich Edlefsen (MINN) def. Ben Althaus (DU), 2-6, 6-2, 7-5
6. Dino Bilankov (MINN) def. Kalle Rosen (DU), 6-4, 6-2
1. Holmstrom/Persson (DU) def. Wilkins/Osorio (MINN), 8-1
2. Kantar/Schwark (MINN) def. Smole/Althaus (DU), 8-4
3. #44 Kienle/Rosen (DU) def. Chi Pham/Geatz (MINN), 8-6
#34 Minnesota def. #62 Denver, 4-3