Flames make a racket at weekend tournament at N.C. State
February 2, 2014 | Raleigh, N.C.
Liberty University's men's and women's racquetball teams traveled to North Carolina State University this past weekend to compete in their third Mid-Atlantic Collegiate Racquetball Conference (MACRC) tournament of the season.
"They did really well," Flames Head Coach Danny Rodriguez said. "We've picked up two new players for the second semester and all our players placed in their divisions, in both singles and doubles."
In men's doubles, Liberty seniors Joel Denney and Ryan Evans rebounded from a 4-15, 15-5, 11-9 first-round loss to Duke University's Jordan Forte and Will Spencer to place first in the Level 2 Gold Division. Denney and Evans dominated the University of Virginia's Jonathan Weinstein and Sam Goldberg, 15-4, 15-13, in the second round before edging the University of North Carolina's Gregory Leeman and Thomas Moore, 15-11, 12-15, 11-8, in the third and final round. Leeman and Moore had defeated Forte and Spencer in a three-game second round match.
Denney and Evans placed second and third, respectively, in the men's singles Level 2 Gold bracket. Denney swept past Forte, 15-8, 15-10, in the quarterfinals before skunking UVa's Patrick Litten, 15-0, 15-0, in the semis and dropping a back-and-forth duel with Leeman, 15-11, 2-15, 11-6, in the final.
Evans rallied past Goldberg, 6-15, 15-11, 11-9, in his quarterfinal match before being swept by Leeman, 15-10, 15-8, to fall to the consolation final. There, he toppled Evans, 15-4, 11-15, 11-3.
Liberty junior David Schreck and sophomore Eric Piering swept both of their matches to claim first place in the men's doubles Level 3 Gold division. They beat the University of Maryland's duo of Alan Skolnik and Kuang Jen Hsieh, 15-10, 15-4, in the semifinals before handling N.C. State's Josh Kunesh and Nathan Shirley 15-10, 15-13 in the final.
Schreck and Piering advanced to an all-Liberty championship match in the men's singles Level 3 Gold division. Schreck pummeled Kunesh, 15-5, 15-3, in the first round, UNC's Omar Kashef, 15-7, 15-5, in the quarterfinals, and Tar Heels teammate Carson Hsiao, 15-2, 15-7, in the semifinals. Meanwhile, Piering received a first-round bye before whacking his way past Shirley, 15-8, 15-12, in the quarterfinals and Weinstein, 15-5, 15-6, in the semifinals. Schreck then nipped Piering, 15-14, 15-6, in the final.
Flames newcomers Kelly Jugar and Nick Gadsby placed second and senior DJ Judd teamed up with sophomore Sean Mackey to take third in Level 4 Gold of men's doubles. Jugar and Gadsby took N.C. State's Matthew Stegall and Aaron Freeman to three games before falling 13-15, 15-10, 11-2 in the final. Stegall and Freeman had battled past Mackey and Judd 13-15, 15-8, 11-0 in the semifinal round.
Jugar and Judd placed first and second, respectively, in the men's singles Level 4 Gold division. Jugar won his first-round match by forfeit before manhandling Duke's Nicholas Naclerio, 15-2, 15-6, in the quarterfinals and edging Hsieh, 15-10, 13-15, 11-10, in his semifinal match. Judd received a first-round bye before rallying past Stegall, 12-15, 15-8, 11-3, in the quarterfinals and dominating Maryland's Adam Zhao, 15-9, 15-1, in the semis. In another all-Flames duel, Jugar swept past Judd in a competitive 15-13, 15-12 final.
Gadsby and Mackey, meanwhile, placed first and second in the men's singles Level 4 Blue division as Gadsby swept Naclerio, 15-4, 15-4, and Mackey ousted Stegall, 15-12, 15-7, in the semis before Gadsby beat Mackey, 15-12, 15-7, in the final.
In Level 2 mixed doubles, Liberty senior Courtney Sharp paired up with Piering to place first, defeating the Wolfpack's tandem of Shirley and Eryn Molloy, 15-12, 15-6, in the semifinals and routing UVa's Eduardo Perez-De La Rosa and Tiffany Ly, 15-2, 15-8, in the final.
The Lady Flames swept the top three spots in women's Level 2-4 doubles with freshman Abigail Lindsey and senior Brooke Morley conquering Sharp and sophomore Meredith Blake, 15-3, 15-3, in yet another all-Liberty final. Lindsey and Morley first swept past N.C. State's Caitlin Amos and Molloy, 15-2, 15-2, in the quarterfinals and Liberty newcomers Kathryn Aylett and Monica Elder, 15-4, 15-2, in Saturday's semifinals.
Morley overcame Lindsey, 15-5, 15-9, in the women's Level 2-3 singles final after dominating Molloy in the quarterfinals and Amos in the semifinals by the same scores, 15-4, 15-1. Elder, Sharp, Blake, and Aylett finished first through fourth, respectively, in the women's singles Level 4 Gold division with Elder sweeping Ly, 15-5, 15-13, in the quarterfinals, Blake, 15-9, 15-11, in the semifinals, and Sharp, 15-7, 15-10, in the finals.
For complete results, visit the MACRC tournament website.