Tritons open tennis season

LINDSBORG, Kan. — Marketa Beladova and Zamani Moyo kicked off the 2021-22 season with victories for the Iowa Central tennis team here Saturday at the Bethany College Invitational.

Beladova, a returning player from last year who helped the Tritons place 10th at nationals, won the A flight championship. The 24th-ranked Beladova dropped just four games on the day.

“This was some extremely impressive tennis by Marketa,” Iowa Central head coach Eric Sturgis said. “She was very dominant at the tournament. I am looking forward to seeing her play in two weeks at the regional championship.”

Emma Semery was fifth with a 2-2 record in the B flight, Tricia Veldhuizen finished ninth in the C flight and Luba Moyo was fifth in the D flight.

“Overall it was a very hot day for tennis,” Sturgis said. “But our ladies played well and it was a good first tournament. We look forward to continuing to build this upcoming weekend against Central College.”

Moyo, a freshman, put together a 3-0 day that included wins over the No. 1 and No. 3 seeds.

“I was very pleased with the way Zamani played throughout the whole tournament,” Sturgis said. “He fought through adversity and won the crucial points to win a very tough A flight draw.”

Eduard Valenca was third in the A flight with Arthur Praud placing fifth. Both went 2-1.

Nolan Laduree was third in the B flight and Nicholas Espinoza finished fourth in the B flight. Theo Devals won the C flight, dropping just three games. All three of those came in a finals meeting with his teammate, Nick Mathis, who finished second.

Luis Fuentes was third and Christian Zepeda fifth in the D flight.

“I was very proud of (Valenca and Praud) in the A flight,” Sturgis said. “They won two matches against stiff competition. For the first tournament of the year, this was a great performance. We saw that we need to work on some things, but overall it was a very good performance.

“All of our men won at least two matches in a tournament with a strong JUCO team, as well as solid NAIA teams.”

The Iowa Central men head to Grand View on Tuesday and the women go to Central this coming Saturday. The ITA Regional Championships are set for September 24-26 in Arkansas City, Kansas.


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