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Flames Win Inaugural ASUN Match 5-2 Against Owls

March 23, 2019  Kennesaw, Ga.  RSS
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Liberty won its inaugural ASUN match 5-2 at Kennesaw State, Saturday.

Liberty won its inaugural ASUN match 5-2 at Kennesaw State, Saturday.

Liberty had a strong showing in its first-ever ASUN Conference match on Saturday evening, picking up a 5-2 road win over host Kennesaw State at the Betty Siegel Tennis Courts.

The Flames improve their overall record to 7-9 overall and 1-0 in the ASUN. Liberty has won three of its last four matches dating back to March 3. Meanwhile, the Owls fall to 6-9 on the year and 0-1 in the ASUN and see a two-match winning streak ended. 

Liberty has defeated Kennesaw State in each of the past two seasons.

Liberty 5, Kennesaw State 2 

Singles Competition
1. Fermin Calvo Barcelo (KSU) def. #101 Nicaise Muamba (LIBERTYM) 6-4, 6-4
2. Josh Wilson (LIBERTYM) def. Lucas deTorres Curth (KSU) 6-7, 6-2, 6-2
3. Chase Burton (LIBERTYM) def. Bryan Triana (KSU) 6-4, 7-6
4. Ian Sturgill (LIBERTYM) def. Gaston Muhammad (KSU) 6-4, 2-6, 6-2
5. Eddie Gutierrez (LIBERTYM) def. Sebastian Osorio (KSU) 2-6, 7-5, 6-1
6. Kevin Patel (KSU) def. Steve Mundt (LIBERTYM) 6-3, 6-3

Doubles Competition
1. Nicaise Muamba/Chase Burton (LIBERTYM) def. Bryan Triana/Drew Lahey (KSU) 7-5
2. Gaston Muhammad/Fermin Calvo Barcelo (KSU) vs. Josh Wilson/Ian Sturgill (LIBERTYM) 5-6, unfinished
3. Vince Salas/Steve Mundt (LIBERTYM) def. Lucas deTorres Curth/Kevin Patel (KSU) 6-4

Liberty 7-9, 1-0 ASUN
Kennesaw State 6-9, 0-1 ASUN
Order of finish: Doubles (3,1); Singles (6,3,4,1,2,5)

Thoughts From Head Coach Derek Schwandt 
"We fought hard as one unit tonight and played disciplined ball."

How It Happened

  • Liberty got off to a good start in the match by taking the doubles session on the strength of victories at No. 3 and No. 1 doubles. Vince Salas and Steve Mundt improved to 7-3 in spring doubles with a 6-4 victory against KSU's Lucas deTorres Curth and Kevin Patel.
  • The No. 1 duo of Niciase Muamba and Chase Burton won their third straight match, defeating Bryan Triana and Drew Lahey of the Owls 7-5 to wrap up the doubles point and give Liberty a 1-0 lead.
  • Kennesaw State's Kevin Patel tied up the match at 1-1 with his two-set victory over Mundt at No. 6 singles.
  • The Flames' Burton countered with a 6-4, 7-6 triumph on court three against Triana. Burton is 3-1 since moving into the No. 3 slot. The Naples, Fla., native has played his best in conference play throughout his three-year Liberty career, compiling a 12-3 mark in league singles matches.
  • With Liberty ahead 2-1, Flames freshman Ian Sturgill battled past Gaston Muhammad in three sets (6-4, 2-6, 6-2) in the No. 4 singles match for a 3-1 lead.
  • The Owls' top player, Fermin Calvo Barcelo, defeated 101st-ranked Muamba in two sets (6-4, 6-4), narrowing the Liberty lead to 3-2.
  • The Flames delivered a pair of three-set victories to win the match 5-2. First, Liberty freshman Josh Wilson overcame a first-set tiebreaker loss to deTorres Curth (court two) to prevail 6-7, 6-2, 6-2 in three sets. Wilson's match-clinching victory was his team-best 11th singles triumph of the spring and made it 4-2 Flames.
  • Playing at No. 5 singles, senior captain Eddie Gutierrez also erased a one-set deficit to his opponent, Sebastian Osorio. Gutierrez's 2-6, 7-5, 6-1 decision was his 65th career singles victory and settled the final outcome at 5-2.
  • Liberty has won its last two conference openers under head coach Derek Schwandt (Big South in 2018, ASUN in 2019). In 2018, the Flames topped the Longwood Lancers in their league opener and started 4-0 in conference play.

Next Up

  • The Flames will take on the North Alabama Lions (1-11, 0-0 ASUN) on Sunday at 3:30 p.m. at the UNA Varsity Tennis Courts The match was originally scheduled to take place on Monday but was bumped up a day due to impending inclement weather.
  • Liberty and UNA will be squaring off for the first time.