GRAND RAPIDS, Ind. - Looking to capture his third ITA Midwest Regional singles title over the weekend in Grand Rapids, Michigan, HU junior Vlad Khudziy made it deep into the tourney before Aquinas College’s Christoff Saari knocked him off, 6-4, 1-6 (11-9), to deny him the three-peat.
Khudziy entered the tournament as the third seed and lived up to his billing by breezing through the first three rounds of play. After disposing of Alex McManhan of Indiana Wesleyan 6-1, 6-3, the Moscow native made quick work of Davenport’s Christian Woods, 6-1, 6-0, and IWU’s Brandon Dubuque, 6-1, 6-1, before meeting up with Saari.
In doubles action, Khudziy teamed up with Jose Hungria as the No. 2 seed where the duo made it to the semifinals before dropping an 8-6 decision to Spring Arbor’s Thomas Calderone and Aaron Mayes. Khudziy and Hungria will have the opportunity to avenge Saturday’s loss Tuesday afternoon when the square off again against the Cougar combo in a regular season conference match.
Their path to the semifinals included an 8-4 win over Aquinas’ Nik Artaev and Andy Struble in the opening round and then victories over Cornesrtone’s Elijah Yi and Austin Hunt (8-3) and Davenport’s Filip Henrikson and Vitaly Schumilov (8-2).
In other doubles action, HU’s Joseph Straznicky and Diego Inurritegui lost in the opening round but worked their way through the consolation draw to make it to the finals where they lost to Artaev and Struble of Aquinas 9-8.
The Foresters are back in action on Tuesday when they travel to Spring Arbor University to take on the Cougars at 4:00 p.m.