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Flames to Host Spiders, Travel to No. 10 UVA this Weekend

February 27, 2014
|  Lynchburg, Va.
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Stan Vaughan

Seeking its second consecutive 3-0 home start, the Liberty men's tennis team hosts the Richmond Spiders on Friday afternoon at 2 p.m. at the Sports Racket, before making the short drive north to Charlottesville, Va., to face No. 10 Virginia on Sunday evening at 6 p.m.

Live stats will be available for Friday's match on LibertyFlames.com by clicking on the live stats link on the men's tennis schedule/results page. A live video stream of each court will be available for the Virginia match.

The Flames are coming off a 5-1 ousting of Morgan State this past Friday. The victory improved Liberty's record to 4-4 overall and 2-0 in home contests. The Flames have earned wins in each of their first three home matches in four previous seasons, including a 5-0 start a year ago.

Liberty and Richmond will be meeting for the 12 time in the all-time series on Friday, with the Spiders holding an 8-3 edge in the previous 11 contests. The most recent match between the two Commonwealth schools went the way of Richmond, 6-1, on Feb. 3, 2012, in Liberty's home opener. The Flames' last win in the series came at Richmond on Feb. 19, 2011, by a final count of 4-3.

Liberty is 0-5 all-time versus Virginia. The 10th ranked Cavaliers will be the highest rated opponent the Flames have ever faced. Liberty is 0-1 so far this season against ranked opponents, falling, 7-0, to then No. 27 LSU on Feb. 8. 

Liberty has a trio of players, Egon Samaai (6-2), Shea Thomas (5-2) and Alejandro Llamas (4-3), who have winning singles records. As a team, the Flames are a combined 24-23 in singles tilts. In doubles play, No. 59 ranked Thomas and Jorge Azuero have three wins, as does Samaai and Dillon Segur. Overall, Liberty is 11-11 in doubles competitions.

Richmond is 3-7 on the season and is coming off back-to-back losses to Appalachian State and Coastal Carolina this past weekend.

No. 10 Virginia is coming off its first loss of the season, 4-3, to No. 1 ranked Ohio State. The Cavaliers, who started the year ranked No. 1, are 6-1 on the season and will face Baylor and Notre Dame this weekend before contesting the Flames. Virginia has three nationally ranked singles players in Mitchell Frank (No. 4), Mac Styslinger (No. 73) and Alex Domijan (No. 92) and one ranked doubles pair, Frank and Styslinger (No. 39).

Following Sunday's match, Liberty travels to South Carolina to face Coker on March 8.