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Salas Captures 2 Titles, Flames Go 10-2 on Final Day of Liberty University Invitational

September 30, 2018  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Salas (left) won a singles and doubles title, Juri (middle) won a doubles title with Salas and Muamba (right) finished as the runner-up in the singles Red draw on Sunday.

Salas (left) won a singles and doubles title, Juri (middle) won a doubles title with Salas and Muamba (right) finished as the runner-up in the singles Red draw on Sunday.

Flames men's tennis junior Vince Salas picked up titles in the men's singles and doubles White draws on the third and final day of competition at the Liberty University Invitational, Sunday at the Cook Tennis Center.

Liberty also picked up 10 total wins on day three (7-1 singles, 3-1 doubles) and closed out the weekend with a combined 29-15 (.659) mark. The Flames went 22-10 in singles and 7-5 in doubles matches.

"Every one of our guys competed hard this tournament," said Liberty head coach Derek Schwandt. "I'm excited about what we are building. Thanks to all who came out to support."

Salas started the afternoon with a doubles crown alongside his partner, freshman Farid Juri. The duo took down Gardner-Webb's Johan Fors and Nick Ulehla 6-2, completing a perfect 3-0 weekend as partners. Juri also won his singles match on Sunday by a 6-0, 6-3 score versus Oscar Alvarez of Presbyterian.

In singles, Salas had to win another three-set match on Sunday, this time coming back to defeat Nick McKinney of Presbyterian 4-6, 7-6 (3), 6-4. Four of Salas' singles sets over the past two days featured tiebreakers, including all three against Radford's Michiel Meekers on Saturday. The native of the Philippines won four singles matches against zero setbacks in claiming the title.

After winning three matches in the first two days to reach the Red draw final, Liberty sophomore Nicaise Muamba lost in the championship match to Gardner-Webb's Millen Hurrion, 6-2, 7-6 (2). Earlier in the day, Muamba teamed up with freshman Ian Sturgill in doubles for a 7-5 triumph over Ben Wayand and Henry Lieberman of Charlotte.

Liberty freshman William Barker claimed three matches in the last two days to take top honors in the backdraw of the men's singles White flight. Barker's three-set victory against Alberto Conde of Presbyterian (1-6, 6-4, 6-4) allowed him to finish 3-1 on the weekend.

Flames freshmen Sturgill and Josh Wilson both won their singles matches on Sunday afternoon as well. Sturgill won in three sets (7-5, 3-6, 6-2) for the second time in as many days, this time defeating Charlotte's Ben Wayand. Wilson topped Menezes of Charlotte in straight sets (6-3, 7-6 (0)). Sturgill and Wilson each went 3-1 in singles at the tournament.

Liberty upperclassmen Eddie Gutierrez and Chase Burton each won their extra singles matches in the Red draw. Gutierrez, a senior, defeated Gardner-Webb's Breno Plentz in two sets, 6-3, 6-4. Burton, a junior, defeated the Virginia Tech Hokies' Chase Berstine in a three set bout (4-6, 6-4, 6-4). Both Liberty players captured two singles matches at the three-day event.

Liberty will have some time off from tournament play before returning to the courts for the ITA Atlantic Regional, hosted by Virginia Tech at the Burrows-Burleson Tennis Center in Blacksburg, Va., from Oct. 18-22.