FORT MYERS, Fla. – Celebrating an Atlantic Sun Conference win with its home fans for the first time this season, the FGCU men’s tennis team snapped a two-match losing streak as it powered past Kennesaw State, 5-2, Friday morning at the FGCU Tennis Complex.
The Eagles improve to 7-9 (2-2 A-Sun) on the season, while the Owls falter to 8-6 (2-1 A-Sun).
“We got a good win over a talented conference opponent today,” head coach CJ Weber said. “Kennesaw State came out with a lot of energy and competed well throughout the whole match, but I felt we responded well in order to get the W. After we dropped the doubles point the guys turned it around in singles play and immediately gained control of the competition. We will be looking to start tomorrow’s match against Mercer then same way we finished today’s against Kennesaw State.”
Kennesaw State jumped to an early lead after claiming two of the doubles matches for a 1-0 advantage. While the Owls managed wins in the No. 2 and No. 3 positions, their No. 1 pair of Jorge Wilton and Maksim Yorsh couldn’t join their teammate with a victory, as they fell 8-5 to FGCU’s Jordi Vives (Barcelona, Spain/IES Ferran Tallada/USC) and Dean Tsamas (Lexington, Ky./Henry Clay HS).
After dropping the doubles point, the Eagles had to win four of the six singles contests if they wanted to hand KSU its first conference loss of the season, and that is exactly what they did.
Quickly pulling the overall score even was Tianyu Bao (Tianjin, China/Bayshore HS) with a dominant win at two-singles. Facing Jorge Wilton, Bao took the first set, 6-2, and all six games of the second in consecutive order for a win at 6-0.
One court to the right Lucas Vaz (Sao Paulo, Brazil/Colegio Fleming/Tulsa) found victory in the No. 4 position to give the Eagles their first lead of the match. Topping KSU’s Louis Theodor, Vaz needed only two sets to earn the win, taking both with a score of 6-2.
Extending FGCU’s lead to 3-1 was Lance Lvovsky (Dania, Fla./Broward Virtual School/Jacksonville), downing David Durham in the five-singles contest. Starting slow, Lvovsky escaped the first set, 6-4, but controlled play in the second, winning it 6-1.
Although the Eagles needed just one more point for the overall victory, the contest was really either teams to win as Kennesaw State earned a second point with a win at three singles and of the remaining two matches one was utilizing lengthy games and tiebreaks as the other was extending into a third set.
Ultimately clinching the match for the Green and Blue was No. 62 Vives with a win over Simon Pritchard in the No. 1 position. Squaring off on court one, the two stayed on serve throughout the first set to force a tiebreak at six all, where Vives came out on the up end at 7-6 (7-3). The back-and-forth play continued in the second, but a late break by Vives gave him the advantage to claim a 7-5 win.
The Eagles continue action at home as they welcome Mercer on Mar. 29 at 6 p.m. For complete coverage of FGCU men’s tennis this season, follow us on Twitter @FGCU_MTEN and visit www.FGCUAthletics.com where full recaps and results will be available.
FGCU: 4 Kennesaw State: 2
1. Dean Tsamas/Jordi Vives (FGCU) def. Jorge Wilton/Maksim Yorsh (KSU) 8-5
2. Simon Pritchard/Louis Theodor (KSU) def. Tianyu Bao/Lance Lvovsky (FGCU) 8-6
3. Jake Bouchillon/David Durham (KSU) def. Chirs Perrigan/Lucas Vaz (FGCU) 8-4
Order of finish: (1,3,2)
1. #62 Jordi Vives (FGCU) def. Simon Pritchard (KSU) 7-6 (7-3), 7-5
2. Tianyu Bao (FGCU) def. Jorge Wilton (KSU) 6-2, 6-0
3. Maksim Yorsh (KSU) def. Dean Tsamas (FGCU) 6-4, 6-3
4. Lucas Vaz (FGCU) def. Louis Theodor (KSU) 6-2, 6-2
5. Lance Lvovsky (FGCU) def. David Durham (KSU) 6-4, 6-1
6. Gabriel Echeverry (FGCU) def. Jake Bouchillon (KSU) 6-3, 6-7 (5-7), 2-1, retired
Order of finish: (2,4,5,3,1)