MACOMB, Ill. - Western Illinois men's tennis opens the fall season hosting the 8th Annual Art Peterson Invitational, a two-day competition beginning at 9 a.m. on Friday (September 7) and concluding Saturday (September 8).
"We want to learn more than anything, I'd like to improve on our finishes from last year," third-year head coach Chris Kane said, "Each year I've been here we've improved in this tourney on our finishes, we would like to do that again...I'm excited to see our doubles teams, whether or not they can put something good together for us".
The 2012-13 roster features very talented student athletes, most being underclassmen. For this weekend's Art Peterson Invitational, freshman newcomer Christoph Haertel will be in the No. 1 spot for singles play. Haertel, who was a top competitor for the junior ranks in his home country of Germany, was an All-State performer in his one season of play at Quincy High School.
Just behind Haertel at the No. 2 singles spot will be Patrick Hammers. Hammers, the lone senior on this year's roster, has been selected to the All-Summit League team the previous two seasons.
Coming in at No. 3 this weekend for singles play is another true freshman making his Leatherneck debut, Bradley Holt. A Homewood, Ill. native, Holt was a two time all-state selection and is just the second four-star tennis recruit to don the Purple & Gold.
Last season's No. 2 Ben Yue is No. 4 for the Leathernecks this weekend, followed by sophomore Mitch Granger at the No. 5 spot. Granger was out last season with an injury but will be healthy heading into the fall.
In doubles play, the duo of Bradley Holt and Patrick Hammers is in the No.1 spot for the Purple & Gold, and Mitch Granger and Ben Yue are playing together for the first time at the No. 2 spot. Tim Worley and Christoph Haertel are in the No. 3 spot, and Brandon Meeker and Chris Bunch occupy the No. 4 spot for Western to round out doubles play.
Friday will feature singles play with doubles being on Saturday. Play will be at the University Courts on the campus of Western Illinois next to Brophy Hall, as well as Macomb High School. The tournament will not go indoors if there is inclement weather and will conclude at roughly 3 p.m. on Saturday afternoon (September 8).
Teams: University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, Lindenwood University, Olivet Nazarene University, Valporaiso University, Roosevelt University, University of Missouri-St. Louis, Truman State University, Western Illinois University.