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Doubles Point Secures Big South Win for LU

March 21, 2009  Asheville, N.C.  RSS
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Gregorio Machado's victory at No. 6 singles helped secure Liberty's 4-3 Big South win over UNC Asheville on Saturday.

Gregorio Machado's victory at No. 6 singles helped secure Liberty's 4-3 Big South win over UNC Asheville on Saturday.

Liberty and UNC Asheville evenly split six singles tennis matches on Saturday, but it was three doubles wins for the Flames that secured their 4-3 Big South victory over the Bulldogs, Saturday morning, at the UNCA Tennis Center.

The victory, Liberty's fourth in the last five trips out onto the tennis courts, ups the Flames' 2008-09 season mark to 11-5 and 1-1 in Big South play. The win leaves the 2009 Flames tied with the 2003 squad for the second most victories in program history (11-11). The program record is still a ways off, as the 1990 team finished the spring season with a 16-5 record.

Liberty opened the match reeling off three straight wins in doubles. After having their personal six-match winning streak snapped, Liberty's Clay Cypert and Giancarlo Lemmi started a new run with an 8-4 win over Mauricio Correra and Jonas Brobeck at No. 1 doubles.

Chad Simpson and Gregorio Machado pushed their winning streak to five in a row, with an 8-4 victory over Joe May and Nicolai Nonnenbroich at No. 2 doubles.

The Flames secure what would be a decisive team point in the match with a Louis Steyn and Juan Reyes 8-2 victory over Nathan White and Alexander Greer at No. 3 doubles, matching their No. 2 tandem's five-match winning streak.

The homestanding Bulldogs opened up the singles matches strong, winning in the top two spots of the lineup. Correra handed Cypert his second straight setback at No. 1 singles with a 6-2, 6-2 win for UNC Asheville, followed by a 6-3, 6-1 victory by Nonnenbroich over Steyn to prevent the junior from picking up his 10th No. 2 singles victory of the season.

Simpson and Lemmi got the Flames back on track, securing victories at No. 3 and No. 4 singles. Simpson moved to 8-3 in the third spot of head coach Chris Johnson's lineup with a 7-6 (4), 6-3 win over Brobeck, followed by Lemmi's three-set victory (6-2, 1-6, 6-1) over White at No. 4 singles.

Mays ended a seven-match singles losing skid for the Bulldogs with a 6-0, 6-4 victory over Reyes in the junior's second match of the year at No. 5 singles, after posting a 10-3 mark for Liberty at No. 6 singles.

With the match hanging in the balance, one of two freshmen on Liberty's roster helped secure the Flames first conference win of the year, as Machado knocked off Alex Appelt, 6-4, 6-3, at No. 6 singles to give Liberty the road win.

The Flames will look to make it two in a row on their weekend conference swing to the western part of the state of North Carolina, when they take on Big South newcomer Gardner-Webb on Sunday.