INDIANAPOLIS, IND. - Toledo (2-2) was overpowered by No. 16 Illinois (1-0) on Saturday by a final score of 83-42. The two schools met at the University of Indianapolis and played an alternative style format that used a running score.
"First of all, we played some very competitive matches starting with Bryant and Terence at No. 2 doubles," UT head coach Al Wermer said. "Our performance was a bit up and down, but our top few singles dug in well."
The different format called for doubles matches to be played to six, while each singles match was played to 10. It also allowed substitutions to occur during a match, but if a substitution occurred then the end result did not count against the two individuals who began the match.
Sophomore Grant Adams notched the only win for the Rockets at No.2 singles, 10-9, but Illinois implemented the substitution rule, which nullified the win from Adams' record.
"The substitution rule we had was probably the most radical and I'm not sure we'd do that again," Wermer explained. "If you're winning, you hate to get pulled. If you're losing, I think you hate it even more."
Coach Wermer utilized substitutions in the No. 4 and No. 6 singles lineup. Senior Bryant Dudzik relieved sophomore Roberto Meza and redshirt freshman Ryan Jorgensen took over for junior Ben Brocker.
Only two of the head-to-head matches played all the way through – No. 3 and No. 5 singles. Sophomore Nicky Wong filled the No. 2 slot for UT by almost pulling off a major upset over Illinois freshman Jared Hiltzik. Hiltzik entered college last fall as the top-ranked recruit, and defeated Wong by a score of 10-8. Senior Terence Weigand played at No. 5 singles and fell to UI's Gosea by a 10-4 final tally.
Toledo will host Walsh for its home opener at 11:00 a.m. on Sunday inside the Shadow Valley Tennis Club. The Midnight Blue & Gold will then travel to Detroit Sunday night for a 7:00 p.m. nightcap at the Franklin Athletic Club.