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Flames Advance to Big South Semifinals

April 14, 2016  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Flames Advance to Big South Semifinals

The No. 5 seed Liberty Flames men's tennis squad blanked No. 4 seed Gardner-Webb, 4-0, during a Thursday quarterfinal match of the 2016 Big South Men's Tennis Championship from the Cook Tennis Center.

Liberty's victory helped the Flames improve to 11-10 overall this season, while the Runnin' Bulldogs conclude their season with a 10-12 overall record.

Liberty claimed the critical doubles point, winning from the No. 2 and No. 3 doubles positions. The sophomore doubles tandem of David Bush and Diego Castano began doubles competition with a 6-3 victory over Paul Hogan and Jonathan Walker from the No. 2 slot.

After the Runnin' Bulldogs earned the 6-4 victory from the No. 1 position, Liberty's freshman duo of Alex Poynter and Eddie Gutierrez picked up a critical 7-5 victory from the No. 3 doubles spot over Yaroslav Prostakov and Adam Schmidt to give the Flames an early 1-0 lead.

Castano began singles play with a straight-set victory for the Flames, providing Liberty with the early 2-0 advantage. The Liberty sophomore bested Benjamin Kaszas 6-2, 6-4 from the No. 4 singles slot.

The Liberty lead was tripled after Gutierrez earned a straight-set victory of his own to provide the Flames with a 3-0 edge. Gutierrez defeated Prostakov, 6-1, 7-6(7-5) from the No. 3 singles position.

Samaai clinched the match for Liberty from the No. 2 singles position. The Liberty senior ousted Nikita Zverkov in straight sets, 7-5, 6-4, to clinch the match by the final score of 4-0 in favor of the Flames.

Liberty will square off against No. 1 seed Coastal Carolina in a Big South Men's Tennis Championship semifinal contest tomorrow morning at 11 a.m. at the Cook Tennis Center. The Chanticleers bested the Flames earlier this season by the final score of 6-1 on April 6.          

Liberty 4, Gardner-Webb 0
Doubles          

  1. Scholl/Zverkov (GWU) def. Matheson/Samaai (LU), 6-4
  2. Bush/Castano (LU) def. Hogan/Walker (GWU), 6-3
  3. Gutierrez/Poynter (LU) def. Prostakov/Schmidt (GWU), 7-5

Singles

  1. No. 94 Matheson (LU) vs. Scholl (GWU), 2-6, 5-4, unfinished
  2. Samaai (LU) def. Zverkov (GWU), 7-5, 6-4
  3. Gutierrez (LU) def. Prostakov (GWU), 6-1, 7-6(5)
  4. Castano (LU) def. Kaszas (GWU), 6-2, 6-4
  5. Bush (LU) vs. Schmidt (GWU), 6-4, 4-4, unfinished
  6. Poynter (LU) vs. Walker (GWU), 6-4, 2-4, unfinished