Both SDSU tennis teams sting Yellowjackets

Chris Mangan

Chris Mangan

The men and women’s tennis teams each swept a pair of duals against Montana State-Billings Oct. 18 and 19 in Rapid City.

The duals were moved to Rapid City due to it being a good meeting point between the two schools and a strong presence of Rapid City natives on the team.

“Three members of my team are from Rapid, and historically, we have always had Hills players on our men and women’s team,” head coach Don Hanson said. “(It’s) good to show the SDSU flag throughout the state. It was a good halfway meeting place for both teams.”

The SDSU men took the first dual 5-2 on Oct. 18 with all top-four singles players recording victories. On Oct. 19, the men won two of three double matches to take victory 4-3.

The men were led by number one player Corey Paluch. The Rapid City native did not drop a match all weekend, sweeping both singles matches and doubles matches with partner Michael Engdahl.

“Corey Paluch is the most outstandingly talented player we have had at SDSU,” Hanson said. “He has only been held back from some really great wins at the highest level of D-I by injury problems, but a healthy Corey can compete with the very best.

Much of Corey’s success is due to a strong family background in tennis, with the Paluch clan – parent, siblings, uncles and cousins – all real tennis stalwarts.”

On the women’s side, the Jacks recorded victories in nine of the 12 singles matches in the two duals to earn 4-3 and 6-1 victories over the Yellowjackets.

“The scholarship program for women is improving, and we are able with the D-I program to recruit very good athletes,” Hanson said.

The recruiting of our number one Bryna Nasenbeny and number six Megan McDougall in particular has greatly strengthened our program. The women are four and one in dual matches and have had some very good tournament results.

Our very young team – two juniors, two sophomores and four freshmen – continue to work hard and improve.”

The duals against MSU-Billings were the last of the fall season.

The Jacks return to action Feb. 13 when they travel to Omaha to take on Creighton. They will be busy until then gearing up for the spring season.

“We begin our strength and conditioning program next week under the direction of our strength and conditioning coach Willy Jones,” Hanson said. “We are also negotiating for the use of an indoor court, as we have no facilities for tennis on campus.”