Men's Tennis' Dayton Trip Highlighted By Win Over Air Force

Rashad Shelton c

Rashad Shelton c

Feb. 19, 2012

DAYTON, Ohio – Army men’s tennis rebounded from a pair of early weekend losses to Ball State and Lipscomb by defeating academy rival Air Force, 4-3, on Sunday afternoon. Playing the trio of matches at a neutral-site location in Dayton, Ohio, the Black Knights capped their weekend by winning the “Silver Star” and improving to 4-4 on the season.

Army fell to first-time opponent Ball State 4-3 in the first match of the weekend. Sophomores Asika Isoh and Henry Jang-Milsten earned singles and doubles wins on the day, first teaming together at No. 1 doubles. The pair defeated Dalton Albertin and Ray Leonard, 8-5, for their fourth win in a row. Isoh then topped Albertin at No. 1 singles, 6-2, 5-7, 6-3, while Jang-Milsten knocked off Alexandre Brym in three sets, 6-3, 3-6, 6-3, at the No.4  spot. Tied at 3-3, the match was decided by the No. 3 singles contest between Army's Alex Holland and BSU's Zane Smith. Smith prevailed in three sets, 3-6, 6-4, 6-2. The Cardinals improved to 7-2 on the season.

Isoh won his third straight singles contest later on Saturday with a 6-2, 5-7, 6-3 victory over the Bison’s Oliver Strecker at the No. 1 spot. The two teams played solely singles matches as Isoh earned Army’s lone point in the 5-1 loss to first-time opponent Lipscomb. The Bison improved to 2-3 on the season with the win.  

Against the Falcons, Army pulled ahead 1-0 after capturing the doubles point. Alex Van Velzer and Peter Sienko defeated Andy Jackson and Alex Grubbs, 8-5, at No. 2, while Alex Holland and Rommel Verano knocked off Joey Brandt and Ali Rizvi, 8-5, at No. 3.

Van Velzer made a clean sweep in singles play, topping Jackson 6-2, 6-2 at No. 2, while doubles partner Sienko proved just as efficient with a 6-1, 6-2 victory over Alex Lineberry at No. 5.

Air Force kept things close with singles wins at Nos. 1, 3 and 4, but Army junior Rashad Shelton would close it out for the Black Knights. Shelton lost the first set against Steven Young, 6-2, at No. 6, before rebounding in convincing fashion in the final two sets, 6-4, 6-2.

The win over Air Force improves Army’s all-time record against its academy foe to 4-3. Two of the three victories have come under the direction of current head coach Jim Poling.

Army will return to their home courts at Lichtenberg Tennis Center for a final nonconference tune-up against Columbia on Feb. 25. Patriot League play opens the following day with a doubleheader opposite Lafayette and Holy Cross.

Ball State 5, Army 2
Singles
1. Asika Isoh (A) def. Dalton Albertin, 6-3, 6-3 
2. Ray Leonard (B) def. Alex Van Velzer,  6-4, 6-2 
3. Zane Smith (B) def. Alex Holland, 3-6, 6-4, 6-2 
4. Henry Jang-Milsten (A) def. Alexandre Brym, 6-3, 3-6, 6-3 
5. Austin Smith (B) def. Rommel Verano, 6-4, 6-1 
6. Patrick Elliott (B) def. Peter Sienko, 6-4, 6-2 
Doubles
1. Isoh/Jang-Milsten (A) def. Dalton Albertin/ Ray Leonard, 8-5 
2. Derek Carpenter/ Zane Smith (B) def. Alex Van Velzer/ Peter Sienko, 8-5 
3. Holland/Verano (A) def. Austin Smith/Austin Sansone, 8-6   

Lipscomb 5, Army 1
Singles
1. Asika Isoh (A) def. Oliver Strecker, 6-2, 5-7, 6-3
2. David Salazar (L) def. Alex Van Velzer, 7-6 (9), 6-4
3. Daniel Hernandez (L) def. Henry Jang-Milsten, 4-6, 7-5, 7-5
4. Stuart Tierney (L) def. Rommel Verano, 3-6, 6-4, Ret.
5. Colby Shaw (L) def. Peter Sienko, 6-3, 2-6, 6-3
6. Chad Pierron (L) def. Andrew Clark, 7-5, 6-1

Army 4, Air Force 3
Doubles
1. Wilhelm / Grant Taylor (AF) def. Isoh / Jang-Milsten, 8-1
2. Van Velzer / Sienko (ARMY) def. Jackson / Grubbs, 8-5
3. Holland / Verano (ARMY) def. Rizvi / Joey Brandt, 8-5

Singles
1. Lance Wilhelm (AF) def. Asika Isoh, 3-6, 6-2, 6-3
2. Alex Van Velzer (ARMY) def. Andy Jackson, 6-2, 6-2
3. Landon Kinsey (AF) def. Alex Holland, 0-6, 6-2, 7-6(3)
4. Alex Grubbs (AF) def. Henry Jang-Milsten, 6-2, 6-4
5. Peter Sienko (ARMY) def. Alex Lineberry, 6-1, 6-2
6. Rashad Shelton (ARMY) def. Steven Young, 2-6, 6-4, 6-2

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