What a fantastic season for Illinois Men's Tennis.
Unfortunately, it ended a few matches short of a national title. Few saw this team getting as far as they did, however, as the Illini turned preseason prognostications on their head and delivered a year to be proud of.
The round of 16 started as well as could be expected for Illinois, as the Illini trounced the TCU Horned Frogs 4-0. I stated in the preview for this weekend that this would be the toughest doubles competition they would face. Instead, the Illini made short work of the Rybakov/Nunez tandem, and swept the first few singles matches on their way to total domination. A bit of vindication after their defeat by this TCU squad in last years Sweet Sixteen.
That led to Illinois’ much-anticipated match against the No. 1-seeded Wake Forest Demon Deacons in Winston-Salem. It obviously didn't go the way the Illini faithful hoped, as Illinois was swept itself, 4-0.
The future still looks bright for this Illini squad as they return several pieces from a team that finished 24-8 with an Elite Eight berth to boot, including rising stars Zeke Clark and Alex Brown. This should be a young and hungry team looking to improve upon what was a stellar season by all accounts.
They remain one of the best teams on campus and will continue that tradition next year.