Late Turnaround Not Enough As @FGCU_MTEN Falls 4-3 To UAB
Saturday, March 22, 2014 | by Sara Roberts
Lucas Vaz picked up a key win for the Eagles (photo credit: Linwood Ferguson)
Lucas Vaz picked up a key win for the Eagles (photo credit: Linwood Ferguson)

FORT MYERS, Fla. – The FGCU men’s tennis team fell just short of a comeback win over the University of Alabama at Birmingham, dropping 4-3 to the Blazers Saturday at the FGCU Tennis Complex. The Eagles move to 6-9 on the season while UAB improves to 7-6.

“Today’s match was very close,” head coach CJ Weber said. “Every set was tight, but UAB did a better job of closing. This loss hurts, but we have an unbelievable group of guys who will keep working hard to end the season strong. We now shift our focus to getting ready for good conference matches against Kennesaw State and Mercer next weekend.”

After taking the doubles point and the first two singles matches the Blazers held an early lead of 3-0, but the Eagles answered winning the next pair of matches to close the gap at 3-2.

Posting the first point for the Green and Blue was No. 70 Jordi Vives (Barcelona, Spain/IES Ferran Tallada/USC) with his 10th win at the one-singles position, beating No.72 Chris Helliar in straight sets. In a back-and-forth first set, with play extending into a tiebreak, Helliar gave Vives a fight but the Barcelona native came out on top at 7-6 (10-8). The two stayed on serve in the beginning of the second, but a break by Vives for a 4-2 lead ignited his play, leading to a win at 6-4.

Earing the Eagles’ next point was Lucas Vaz (Sao Paulo, Brazil/Colegio Fleming/Tulsa), finding victory after a three-set battle with Lucas Dirube in the No. 4 position. In a slow start Vaz dropped the first set a close 5-7, but was able to turn things around as he went on to win the next two in quick fashion, 6-2, 6-3.

UAB went on the clinch the match after Stepan Vancurik (UAB) topped Lance Lvovsky (Dania, Fla./Broward Virtual School/Jacksonville), 6-4, 3-6, 6-4, in the No. 5 slot.

With the No. 6 dual between Gabe Echeverry (Popayan, Colombia/Gimnasio Calibio) and Felipe Pinto close to ending the two let the match finish, resulting in the Eagles’ third point. After taking the opening set 7-5, Echeverry dropped the second 3-6, put was able to pick his game up in the third for a win at 6-4.

The Eagles resume A-Sun play at home as they host Kennesaw State on Mar. 28 at 11 a.m., and Mercer the next day at 6 p.m. For complete coverage of FGCU men’s tennis against Wright State, follow us on Twitter @FGCU_MTEN and visit where full recaps and results will be available at the end of each day.


FGCU: 3 UAB: 4

1. Dean Tsamas/Jordi Vives (FGCU) vs. Chris Helliar/Mitchell Martell (UAB) unfinished
2. Donovan McSeveney/Lucas Dirube (UAB) def. Tianyu Bao/Lance Lvovsky (FGCU) 8-4
3. Luiz Felipe Pinto/Rafael Rondino (UAB) def. Chirs Perrigan/Lucas Vaz (FGCU) 8-6

Order of finish: (2,3)

1. #70 Jordi Vives (FGCU) def. #72 Chris Helliar (UAB) 7-6 (10-8), 6-4
2. Rafael Rondino (UAB) def. Tianyu Bao (FGCU) 6-4, 6-4
3. Donovan McSeveney (UAB) def. Dean Tsamas (FGCU) 6-4, 6-3
4. Lucas Vaz (FGCU) def. Lucas Dirube (UAB) 5-7, 6-3, 6-2
5. Stepan Vancurik (UAB) def. Lance Lvovsky (FGCU) 6-4, 3-6, 6-4
6. Gabriel Echeverry (FGCU) def. Luiz Felipe Pinto (UAB) 7-5, 3-6, 6-4

Order of finish: (2,3,1,4,5,6)