Sunday, April 2, 2017

Liberty Flames Men's Tennis Falls to First Place Presbyterian

The Liberty men's tennis squad could not get past first place Presbyterian in Big South action Saturday afternoon at the Cook Tennis Center, losing 6-1.

The Flames' fourth straight setback puts them at 7-11 overall and 0-4 in the Big South, while the Blue Hose improve to 12-9 and 4-0 in the Big South.

Presbyterian took the doubles point by winning the No. 1 and No. 2 matches. The Blue Hose also won at No. 2-6 singles in a match that saw all six singles bouts need only two sets to decide.

In doubles, PC's No. 2 unit of Brandon Mills and Alexander Lykou defeated Liberty's Vince Salas and Eddie Gutierrez, 6-3. The Blue Hose also took care of business on court one, as Ben Kelly and Joel Roberts knocked off the Flames' top unit, Alex Poynter and Diego Castano, 6-2. The PC seniors' win put the visitors out in front, 1-0.

Liberty's Chase Burton and Max Borcuti improved to 7-5 as a pairing, this spring, with a 6-3 triumph over Diego Manzanas and Jaime Lopez in the No. 3 doubles match.

Despite the doubles setback, Manzanas knocked off Gutierrez (6-1, 6-0) in straight sets on court three, putting PC up, 2-0. The Blue Hose lead grew to 3-0 from Kelley's 6-2, 6-3 defeat of Castano in the No. 4 slot.

Lopez provided the winning point for PC, requiring two sets to knock off Borcuti (6-2, 6-1) on court six. The Blue Hose boasted their lead to 5-0 with a win from Alejandro Bejar in the No. 5 match. Bejar beat Liberty sophomore Ryker Heller, 6-1, 6-3.

Presbyterian's Brandon Mills handled Liberty's Salas, 6-2, 6-4 on court two but Burton salvaged the final point for the hosts with a two-set win over PC's No. 1 player Alexander Lykou, 6-4, 6-3.

Saturday's match was the final home match for Liberty men's tennis, this season. The Flames will be back in action on Wednesday at noon at Big South foe UNC Asheville (6-12, 0-6 Big South). First serve is scheduled for noon at Asheville Racquet Club.

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