2021 GPAC men's tennis tournament preview

By Jacob Knabel on Apr. 28, 2021 in Men's Tennis

SEWARD, Neb. – After coming up short of a GPAC regular season title, the Concordia University Men’s Tennis team hopes to contend for a conference tournament title. As the No. 2 seed in the GPAC, the Bulldogs will await the winner between third-seeded Doane and sixth-seeded Northwestern in the GPAC semifinals on Friday. The Bulldogs earned a quarterfinal bye. All GPAC postseason matches will be played at Fremont High School in Fremont, Neb.

GPAC Tournament

GPAC Semifinals
Concordia (9-5, 5-1) vs. Doane (10-9, 4-2) / Northwestern (5-9, 1-5)
Friday, April 30 | 2 p.m. CT
Fremont High School | Fremont, Neb.

GPAC Championship
Saturday, May 1 | 10 a.m. CT
Fremont High School | Fremont, Neb.

By the numbers

·        Head Coach David DeSimoine’s squad concluded the regular season on Tuesday with a 7-0 loss at regular season champion Midland. Both squads entered the matchup with 5-0 GPAC marks. Concordia had been vying for the program’s first conference title since 1990 (10 years prior to the formation of the GPAC). The Warriors were a worthy champion. They went 6-0 in GPAC play with four wins by 7-0 scores and two by finals of 6-1.

·        The Bulldogs finished above .500 in conference play for the first time since 2014 (3-2). In addition, the five GPAC wins are the most for the program since 2010. Concordia made a leap forward in 2021 largely due to its depth. Near the back of the lineup, Joe Bindl and Isaac Howes both went 5-1 in GPAC singles matches. Another three Bulldogs notched at least three GPAC singles wins: Luke Zoller (4-2), Jeremiah Berryman (3-2) and Eduardo Rojas (3-2). Over six GPAC matches, Concordia went a combined 23-13 in singles and 12-6 in doubles play.

·        Reaching the GPAC tournament final would be another significant accomplishment for the program. The semifinals have been a barrier that the Bulldogs have not been able to breach. In 2019, Concordia once again fell in the semifinals, 5-1, to Doane. The Bulldogs and Tigers may meet again in the semifinals. Doane must first defeat Northwestern in the quarterfinals in order to set up the rematch. The Bulldogs squeaked out a 4-3 win over the Tigers in the regular season.

·        By singles lineup position, Concordia has records of 3-11 at No. 1, 4-10 at No. 2, 7-7 at No. 3, 9-4 at No. 4, 11-2 at No. 5 and 8-5 at No. 6. Bindl has been especially successful while sporting an overall mark of 11-2. He is 5-0 at No. 5 and 4-2 at No. 6. Howes has the next most wins on the team with seven.

The GPAC will receive one bid to the NAIA Men’s Tennis National Championships. That bid will go to the team that wins the conference tournament. The national championships will take place May 18-22 in Mobile, Ala.