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Men's Tennis Knocked Off by Winthrop in Big South Contest

March 22, 2014
|  Lynchburg, Va.
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With a doubles win on Saturday, Shea Thomas tied Giancarlo Lemmi for the most doubles victories in program history with 79.

The Liberty men's tennis team posted a sweep of the doubles contests, but Winthrop bounced back to win five out of the six singles matches to defeat the Flames, 5-2, on Saturday afternoon at the Hershey Tennis Courts. In the loss, Liberty's Shea Thomas posted a doubles win to match Giancarlo Lemmi for the most career doubles victories in program history with 79.

Liberty's record drops to 7-8 overall and 0-2 in Big South matches. Winthrop improves to 9-7 on the season and 2-0 in conference tilts.

Flames head coach Chris Johnson switched up the team's No. 1 and No. 3 doubles pairs, and the move paid dividends as both duos notched wins. Jorge Azuero and Alejandro Llamas knocked off Winthrop's Dylan Comerford and Peter Nagovnak, 8-4, at No. 1. In the No. 3 position, the Flames' Thomas and Stan Vaughan ousted Michael Chen and Yuta Hirokawa, 8-5, giving Thomas his historical victory. Liberty's Egon Samaai and Dillon Segur upped their doubles record to a team-best 7-3 with an 8-3 defeat of Steven Patrick and Tremayne Mitchell in the No. 2 spot.

The Eagles opened singles play with wins in the bottom three singles positions. Mitchell knocked off Llamas, 6-3, 6-1, at No. 4 before Juan Pablo Boada ousted Vaughan, 6-2, 6-1, in the No. 5 contest. Chen put Winthrop ahead 3-1 with a 6-3, 6-3 defeat of Segur at No. 6.

Samaai pulled the Flames to within a point after delivering a straight-set win in the No. 2 spot over Patrick, 6-4, 6-2. With the victory, the sophomore improved to a team-best 9-5 in singles contests.

Winthrop pulled out wins in the No. 1 and No. 3 positions to earn the 5-2 victory. Hirokawa edged Thomas in two hard-fought sets, 7-6, 7-6, while Comerford came from behind to down Azuero, 2-6, 6-4, 7-5.

The Flames continue Big South play tomorrow with a road match at Longwood. The contest is slated to begin at 1 p.m.

Winthrop 5, Liberty 2
DOUBLES
1. Jorge Azuero/Alejandro Llamas (LU) def. Dylan Comerford/Peter Nagovnak (WU), 8-4
2. Egon Samaai/Dillon Segur (LU) def. Steven Patrick/Tremayne Mitchell (WU), 8-3
3. Shea Thomas/Stan Vaughan (LU) def. Michael Chen/Yuta Hirokawa (WU), 8-5

SINGLES
1. Yuta Hirokawa (WU) def. Shea Thomas (LU), 7-6, 7-6
2. Egon Samaai (LU) def. Steven Patrick (WU), 6-4, 6-2
3. Dylan Comerford (WU) def. Jorge Azuero (LU), 2-6, 6-4, 7-5
4. Tremayne Mitchell (WU) def. Alejandro Llamas (LU), 6-3, 6-1
5. Juan Pablo Boada (WU) def. Stan Vaughan (LU), 6-2, 6-1
6. Michael Chen (WU) def. Dillon Segur (LU), 6-3, 6-3