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After opening with a win over St. Norbert, the Norse returned to the courts for a battle with the host Vikings of Augustana. All three doubles matches were tightly contested with Luther holding a 2-1 edge heading into singles play, but the Vikings responded with four singles wins to grab a 5-4 win.
Torstein Jystad and Matt Knutson jumped out to a 3-0 lead at No. 3, but then trailed 6-7 late in the match before forcing a deciding tie-breaker. The Norse duo had several match points, but were unable to convert, ultimately falling (9-8 (9-7)) to Augustana’s Jack Cullen and Kevin Bayles. Nick Mozena and James Ayer leveled the match at 1-1 with a service break in the final game to pick up an (8-5) win over Harald Olsson and William Palmer at No. 2. Ramesh Karki and Quinn Foley were down a break at two different times in their match at No. 1, but fought back to earn a (9-7) win against Lawrence Palmer and Andy Wall, giving Luther its 2-1 advantage.
Mozena was never able to get going in his singles match at No. 2 with Olsson, falling (6-1, 6-0) as Augustana evened the match, 2-2. Luther picked up its final two points of the day with straight set wins from Karki and Matt Bellio. Karki was a (6-4, 6-4) winner over Lawrence Palmer at No. 1 while Bellio held off William Palmer (7-6 (1), 6-3) at No. 3. The No. 4, No. 5, and No. 6 matches all split sets and went to deciding third set super tie-breakers, with the Vikings winning all three to earn the win. Matt Knutson dropped a (3-6, 7-5, (10-1)) decision to Grant Wick at No. 6, Ayer lost (3-6, 6-2, (10-6)) to Bayles at No. 5, and Jystad’s rally came up just short with a (6-3, 6-7 (5), (11-9)) loss to Wall at No. 4.
The Norse are 1-1 overall this season and will be back in action on Saturday, Feb. 16 with a pair of matches at the Winona Tennis Center in Winona, Minnesota. Luther will face Carleton and UW-La Crosse.
Questions? Contact David Blanchard, post_to_results, 563-387-1586