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Men's Tennis Tops Bluefield State, 5-2, in Home Opener
The Liberty men's tennis team opened up the home portion of its 2014 schedule with a 5-2 win against the visiting Bluefield State Blues on Friday evening at the Sports Racket.
The Flames improve to 2-0 for the second consecutive season and the third time in program history. Liberty also ups its record to a perfect 6-0 all-time against the Blues.
Liberty opened the evening with a sweep of the doubles matches. In the No. 2 position, the Flames' Stan Vaughan and Alejandro Llamas were victors over Vishwesh Sinha and Vlad Catlan, 8-5. Egon Samaai and Guillem Secanell quickly followed with an 8-6 triumph against Conner Pickering and Aziz Yuldashev in the No. 3 spot, clinching the doubles tally for the home team.
In the No. 1 doubles position, Liberty's No. 26 ranked pair of Shea Thomas and Jorge Azuero outlasted Jacob Carey and Piotr Kruk, 8-6, to complete the sweep for the Flames. With the win, Thomas becomes the second player in program history to record 75 career doubles victories.
The Flames opened up a 3-0 advantage with straight-set wins from Thomas and Samaai in the No. 1 and No. 3 positions, respectively. Thomas ousted Carey, 7-5, 6-3, before Samaai downed Kruk, 7-5, 6-4.
Azuero was pushed to three sets in the No. 2 position, but the junior collected the 6-3, 2-6, 6-3 victory versus Yuldashev, sealing the match for the Flames. Llamas downed Sinha, 7-6, 7-6 in the No. 4 spot, notching Liberty's fifth point of the contest.
The Blues closed the evening with victories from Pickering and Catlan. At No. 5, Pickering knocked off Vaughan, 7-6 (5), 6-4, before Catlan defeated Secanell in the No. 6 spot, 7-6, 2-6, 1-0 (10-6).
Next up, the Flames return to the road on Thursday with a matchup against William & Mary.
Liberty 5, Bluefield State 2
1. Thomas/Azuero (LU) def. Carey/Kruk (BLUE), 8-6
2. Llamas/Vaughan (LU) def. Sinha/Catlan(BLUE), 8-5
3. Samaai/Secanell (LU) def. Pickering/Yuldashev (BLUE), 8-6
1. Thomas (LU) def. Carey (BLUE), 7-5, 6-3
2. Azuero (LU) def. Yuldashev (BLUE), 6-3, 2-6, 6-2
3. Samaai (LU) def. Kruk (BLUE), 7-5, 6-4
4. Llamas (LU) def. Sinha (BLUE), 7-6, 7-6
5. Pickering (BLUE) def. Vaughan (LU), 7-6 (5), 6-4
6. Catlan (BLUE) def. Secanell (LU), 7-6, 2-6, 1-0 (10-6)