TALLAHASEE, Fla. – After a morning that yielded a trio of victories in the singles qualifier, the FGCU men’s tennis team failed to send any more players into the singles main draw on the first day of the USTA/ITA Southeast Regional Championships hosted by Florida State Scott Speicher Tennis Center.
Thursday saw 36 players vie for eight open spots in the singles main draw, which will begin on Friday along with the doubles main draw. Senior Jackson Moore (Bradenton, Fla./Lakewood Ranch HS/Georgia State) along with juniors Gabe Echeverry (Popayan, Colombia/Gimnasio Calibio) and Lance Lvovsky (Dania, Fla./ Broward Virtual School/Jacksonville) posted wins in the morning, but fell just one more victory shy of one of the eight spots.
Lvovsky, who will team with sophomore Tianyu Bao (Tianjin, China/Bayshore HS (FL)) in the doubles main draw, defeated Rich Meade of FAU convincingly, 6-1, 6-0, while Moore also won in straight sets over Louis Theodor of Kennesaw State, 6-2, 6-2.
Echeverry endured a pair of three-set matches, battling back from a second set loss to Kennesaw State’s Alexander Pena in the morning by taking the third and deciding set, 6-2. Echeverry fell just one set away from advancing to the singles main draw, falling to Everth Dzib of USF, 0-6, 6-0, 6-3 in the afternoon.
Representing the Southeast Region along with FGCU is host Florida State, Georgia, Florida, Georgia Tech, Miami, USF, Florida A&M, North Florida, UCF, FAU, Kennesaw State, Stetson, Georgia State and Georgia Southern.
Coming off a singles main draw title at the FGCU Fall Classic, sophomore Jordi Vives (Barcelona, Spain/IES Ferran Tallada/USC) earned a top 16 seed in the singles main draw and will take the court on Friday at 9 a.m. when he faces Georgia Tech’s Juan Melian. Vives enters with an 8-2 record on the season, going 5-0 en route to his singles title at the FGCU Fall Classic. All five of Vives’ victories during the title run came in straight sets and he gave up just 18 games over the weekend. All eight of Vives’ wins have come in straight sets.
Junior Dean Tsamas (Lexington, Ky./Henry Clay HS) and Bao will also play in the singles main draw. Tsamas has had a stellar fall, going 6-3 and advancing to the Round of 16 in all three tournaments. Bao, the reigning A-Sun Freshman of the Year, went 2-1 at the FGCU Fall Classic, but faced difficult schedule in the first two tournaments, taking no less than three games in a set against opponents from Florida, Florida State, Clemson and Georgia Tech.
Other than the Round of 64 singles matches, Friday will be mostly doubles play as the combo of Bao and Lvovsky will look to build off their title at the FGCU Fall Classic. The duo defeated a pair of UCF doubles teams and FAU’s squad of Albrecht and Neuner, who finished last season ranked No. 10 in the Southeast Region, on their way to a 4-0 weekend.
Tsamas and Echeverry also have a bye in the first round of doubles and will play the previous mentioned Neuner and Dubuque from FAU Friday afternoon. Vives and Moore will team up to play Miami’s Stancati and Gonzalez on Friday. Brown and Beiler round out FGCU’s doubles teams and they will also play in one of the 13 out-matches to make the field of 32 against Gauer and Gonzalez of Florida State.
Fans can get updates on FGCU men’s tennis on twitter by following @FGCU_MTEN or by searching the hashtag #USTAITARegionals. Daily recaps with results will be available at www.FGCUATHLETICS.com.
SINGLES MAIN DRAW QUALIFIER - Thursday
Gabe Echeverry (FGCU) def. Alexander Pena (Kennesaw St.) – 6-4, 4-6, 6-2
Everth Dzib (USF) def. Gabe Echeverry (FGCU) – 3-6, 6-0, 6-3
Jackson Moore (FGCU) def. Louis Theodor (Kennesaw St.) – 6-2, 6-2
Garrett Gordon (Georgia Tech) def. Jackson Moore (FGCU) – 6-3, 7-5
Lance Lvovsky (FGCU) def. Rich Meade (FAU) – 6-1, 6-0
Michael Rinaldi (FSU) def. Lance Lvovsky (FGCU) – 6-3, 6-0
Simon Julin (Stetson) def. Colin Brown (FGCU) – 6-1, 6-1
Egor Panyushkin (Stetson) def. Michael Beiler (FGCU) – 6-1, 4-6, 6-4
Rayane Djouad (Ga. Southern) def. Dylan Gunning (FGCU) – 6-0, 6-1
SINGLES MAIN DRAW - Friday
Dean Tsamas (FGCU) vs. (1) Van Overbeek (Florida) – 11 a.m.
Tianyu Bao (FGCU) vs. Billy Federhofer (Florida) – 9 a.m.
(9-16) Jordi Vives (FGCU) vs. Juan Melian (Georgia Tech) – 9 a.m.
DOUBLES MAIN DRAW - Friday
Vives/Moore (FGCU) vs. Stancati/Gonzalez (Miami)
Tsamas/Echeverry (FGCU) vs. Neuner/Dubuque (FAU)
Bao/Lvovsky (FGCU) vs. Winner of Verdam/Doherty (Ga. Southern) vs. Menhofer/Theodor (Kennesaw St.) Brown/Beiler (FGCU) vs. Gauer/Gonzalez (FSU)