(Story courtesy of Trinity University Sports Infotmation)
ST. PETER, Minn. - The Trinity Tigers are the new Intercollegiate Tennis Association Division III Men's Indoor national champions.
Trinity captured the prestigious title with a 5-4 victory over Emory University on Sunday at Gustavus Adolphus College. The top-seeded Tigers improved their record to 7-2 this season. Led by Head Coach Russell McMindes, Trinity is ranked third by the ITA. Emory was seeded third and is ranked sixth nationally.
Charlie Curtis clinched the match for Trinity by winning No. 5 singles 6-4, 6-3. Curtis also played the deciding match in the Tigers 6-3 wins over Gustavus Adolphus and Johns Hopkins University in the quarterfinals and semifinals, respectively.
Trinity got on the board first as Curtis and Chas Mayer took No. 3 doubles. After the Eagles evened the match at 1-1, Adam Krull and Clayton Niess gave Trinity the 2-1 lead heading into the singles competition, by winning a 9-7 thriller at No. 2 doubles.
Emory struck first in singles to draw even with Trinity at 2-2, winning the third line of singles. Skinner then pushed the Tigers back in front with his 6-1, 6-7, 6-1 win from the second singles position. The Eagles remained resilient, however, taking a second win in singles at line four to tie the match up again.
Adam Krull then put Trinity back in front with his three-set win, taking No. 1 singles 6-3, 4-6, 6-2, pushing the Tigers to the brink of the win. With Emory leading at line six of singles, everything was riding on Curtis, and he came through once again to give Trinity the narrow win.
Last year, the Tigers finished third at the ITA Indoors at Mayfield Village, Ohio. Trinity also won third place at the 2014 NCAA Division III Championship at Claremont, California.
Trinity is no stranger to winning ITA National Championships. Along with their first team title, the Tigers have won 12 individual singles and doubles ITA Championships. Skinner and Jordan Mayer brought home the USTA/ITA Division III Doubles crown last October, marking Trinity's fourth tandem win. In 2012, Skinner won the ITA Singles Championship.
Up next for the Tigers will be a home match on Friday, March 6, against Tyler Junior College, ranked No. 3 in the National Junior College Athletic Association.