Men’s tennis off to rocky start

The Butler men’s tennis team got its spring season off to an up and down start against two non-conference foes over the weekend. After yesterday’s match against Indiana University, the Bulldogs (record) will look to pick up road victories against Ohio St. and Illinois St.

Saturday’s match against No. 29 Wisconsin did not go well for Butler, as the Bulldogs failed to pick up a point against the Badgers (2-0).

“…,” head coach Jason Suscha said.

In singles competition, Butler junior Zach Ervin gave his opponent the most trouble. He kept his first set with freshman Alex Robles close, forcing the only 12th game of a set in the entire singles competition.

However, Robles managed to hold off Ervin and take the first set, 7-5. He then finished off Ervin by a score of 6-3 in the second set to pick up the victory.

Butler’s top two singles players, seniors Brandon Bayliss and Bryce Warren, struggled in the contest, winning a combined seven of the 29 games they played. Bayliss was defeated by senior Marek Michalika 6-1, 6-2, while Warren fell to sophomore Billy Bertha 6-1, 6-1.

Warren, who tied with Bayliss last season for most wins at singles for the Bulldogs, has been struggling throughout the 2010-11 season. He missed some time during the fall with an injury that may still be nagging him in the spring.

“…,” Suscha said.

Butler didn’t fare much better in the doubles competition against the Badgers, dropping all three of its matches.

Ervin and Bayliss faced off against sophomore Ricardo Martin and freshman Rod Carey in the closest of the trio of matches. The final score of the match was 8-6 in favor of Martin and Carey.

The other two doubles matches ended as 8-4 losses for Butler.

The Bulldogs looked to turn things around the very next day in a home contest versus Northern Illinois. The Huskies (record) took down Dayton on Saturday in their season opener by a score of 5-2.