Apr 20, 2010

Tennis set to make a racket in Big South tourney

by Peter Sawyer

Flames sophomore Giancarlo Lemmi battled for the win in his singles match late Sunday afternoon to put the Flames over Gardner-Webb in a close contest 4-3.The Flames ended the season with this win putting them at 4-2 in the Big South and 12-9 overall.

“We’re going to be in a tie for third place with Coastal Carolina which is still a wonderful finish,” Flames head tennis coach Chris Johnson said.

The Flames gave up the doubles point but rallied to win four of the six singles matches.

Flames freshman Tristan Stayt won the No. 2 match, senior Chad Simpson won the No. 4 match, and senior Louis Steyn won the No. 5 match. Lemmi’s match was the last to finish and both teams gathered around to cheer their teammates on as the outcome of the day depended on them.

Liberty was in a three-way tie with Winthrop and Radford for first place in the Big South Conference heading into their final match.

Winthrop swept all six of the singles matches, but the tandem of Juan Reyes and Steyn were able to win the No. 3 doubles match.

The Flames were able to bounce back from the loss on Saturday to beat Gardner-Webb on Sunday. According to Johnson they are “very confident” going into the post season.

“We’re very excited. We’re playing good tennis,” Johnson said.

The Flames garnered a No. 4 seed with the win, and will battle Gardner-Webb again in the first match of the day at Thursday’s Big South Men’s Championship.

In women’s tennis, the Lady Flames fell to Winthrop early on Saturday 6-1. Winthrop took the doubles point, winning both contested matches. Liberty senior Jordan Jenkins defeated Yasmine Alkema in the No. 1 singles match. The Lady Flames closed out their season on Sunday in Blacksburg, Va., with a 5-2 loss to the Virginia Tech Hokies, securing a No. 7 seed in the upcoming Big South Women’s Tennis Championship and a matchup with No. 2 seed Winthrop on Thursday.

Contact Peter Sawyer at

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