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Liberty to Square off with George Mason and Navy, Friday and Saturday

February 9, 2017  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Castano and the Flames will play at George Mason and at Navy, Friday and Saturday.

Castano and the Flames will play at George Mason and at Navy, Friday and Saturday.

The Liberty Flames men's tennis team continues its current road trip with matches at George Mason and Navy, Friday and Saturday.

The Flames (2-2) take on George Mason (2-2) on Friday at 10:30 a.m. at the Montclair Country Club in Montclair, Va. On Saturday, Liberty will take on Navy (7-2) at 1 p.m. at the Tose Family Tennis Center in Annapolis, Md. The Patriots and Midshipmen will face each other at 10:30 a.m., Saturday morning.

Series History
The Flames have a 3-0 edge in the all-time series against George Mason, with their last win coming in 2009 over the Patriots. Liberty and Navy have never met in a men's tennis match.

Revisiting Wednesday's Match at Elon
The Flames dropped a 5-2 decision at Elon, Wednesday afternoon. Freshman Vince Salas and sophomore Eddie Gutierrez both collected victories in singles to score the only points for Liberty.

Salas' win was his team-leading 10th of the 2016-17 season in singles, while Gutierrez remained unbeaten (4-0) in one-on-one competition.

Road Trip Continues
Following Friday and Saturday's contests with George Mason and Navy, Liberty will then play at N.C. Central and at Furman, Feb. 17 and 19 to close out a five-game road trip.

Liberty's Big South Conference slate will start on March 1 vs. Longwood in Lynchburg.

Burton Garners Second Straight Big South Honor
Chase Burton was named the Big South Freshman of the Week for the second week in a row. The Naples, Fla., native earned a pair or wins over JMU this past Saturday and started the spring a combined 6-0 in singles and doubles play.

Youth Being Served
Liberty's 2016-17 roster is made up of three freshmen (Samuel Brown, Chase Burton and Vince Salas), four sophomores (Max Borcuti, Eddie Gutierrez, Ryker Heller and Alex Poynter) and a junior (Diego Castano).

Burton enters his first spring campaign ranked No. 19 in singles in the Atlantic Region, while Salas posted a team-best 8-4 mark in singles play during the fall. The Flames' strongest doubles pairing in the fall was Castano and Poynter, who went 6-1.

Scouting George Mason
The Patriots enter Saturday's matchup with a 2-2 overall record and two-match winning streak. They've defeated James Madison and St. Mary's while losing to VCU and East Carolina.

Last spring, George Mason finished 10-14 and 2-6 in A-10 play.

This year's roster is composed of four freshmen, a sophomore, three juniors and three seniors. The Patriots are coached by Jimmy Davis, a former player Atlantic 10 All-Conference player for the school.

Scouting Navy
The Midshipmen are off to an impressive start in 2017 with a 7-2 mark. Their most recent win came over Delaware, Sunday in Annapolis, Md. In 2016, Navy went 22-9 overall and 5-0 in league play.

Their current 15-man roster consists of six freshmen, three sophomores, four juniors and two seniors.

Navy is commandeered by Chris Garner, who is in his third season in charge of the program.