With a team packed with talented freshmen and two strong returners, Moraine Valley Community College men’s tennis is optimistic about a successful season.

Last year, the Cyclones finished over .500 (5-4) and improved every match. Head Coach David Souza, in his third season at the helm, saw nearly his entire crew graduate last year and recruited strong athletes in the area to supplement the void they left. He sees glimmers of talent similar to the 2018 squad that competed at nationals.

“My outlook for the season is extremely positive. I am looking forward to this season because we have extreme depth in our squad. We haven’t seen depth like this since our last team that had a nationals appearance,” Souza said.

The two returners, Ixit Prajapati (Oak Forest) and Henry Witek (Andrew), are captains. Three of the five incoming freshmen – John Kenny (Lincoln-Way East), Lukas Cepronas (Stagg) and Jaykumar Patel (Oak Forest) – should join Prajapati as one of the top four players to help lead the team. Also joining the roster are freshmen Ujwal Patel (Oak Forest) and Dhrumil Prajapati (Oak Forest).

“Our goal for this year is, of course, qualifying for nationals. It will be very tough with more and more teams including foreign players in their squads, but I’m sure with the depth we have, we will overcome those challenges,” Souza said. “With the squad depth being so much closer in terms of skill, it’s giving me a lot more free range to do harder drills, which will give us more weapons to work with in matches.”

The Cyclones have time to prepare as they open their season at home on Thursday, April 4, 2:45 p.m., against Prairie State College.

For updates on Cyclones Athletics, visit mvcyclones.com.


For news media inquiries, contact Maura Vizza, Moraine Valley communications specialist and sports information coordinator, at (708) 974-5742 or Vizzam@morainevalley.edu.