Liberty Turns in Dominant 9-2 Record Versus Penn State, Saturday
The Liberty men’s tennis team turned in a dominant 9-2 record versus Penn State on Saturday evening at the Liberty Indoor Tennis Center.
Day two of the Liberty Dual saw the Flames go 6-1 in singles and 3-1 in doubles against the Nittany Lions.
Collectively, Liberty is 11-4 in singles and 4-4 in doubles through two days of competition against Penn State and Clemson. The Flames’ Rafael Marques Da Silva, Thando Longwe-Smit and Deji Thomas-Smith sports 2-0 singles records so far at the event.
Key Stats & Notes
• Liberty opened the evening with a strong doubles session in which it won three of the four contests. On court one, the Flames’ Josh Wilson and Christiaan Worst defeated Charl Morgan and Miko Eala 6-1. The Liberty duo’s win was its team-best ninth of the fall campaign.
• Thando Longwe-Smit and Omar El Kadi became the only 2-0 Flames doubles unit this weekend with a 6-2 result over the duo of Andrei Paduraru and Harrison Janes.
• Liberty’s pairing of Deji Thomas-Smith and Rafael Marques Da Silva upended the Pranav Nemani and Ismail Saadi of the Nittany Lions 6-3.
• The Flames’ singles triumphs came from Wilson, Marques Da Silva, Beau Pelletier, Thomas-Smith, Longwe-Smit and Zion Heaven. Five of those six victories were in straight sets.
• For a second straight day, Marques Da Silva won in comeback fashion (three sets). The native of Brazil edged Eala (Penn State) 5-7, 7-6 (3), 6-4. After the win, his record stands at 7-3 in singles this season.
• Longwe-Smit and Thomas-Smith both improved to 2-0 this weekend. Longwe-Smit continued his strong play this fall with a 6-2, 6-4 result over Nemani to run his record to a team-best 10-1. Meanwhile Thomas-Smith defeated Saadi by a 6-2, 6-3 count.
• Wilson, Pelletier and Heaven each picked up their first singles wins at the tournament. Wilson, playing in the No. 1 slot, downed Morgan (PSU) 6-3, 6-3. Pelletier took down Bhatnagar in straight sets (6-4, 6-2) for the first home singles victory of his Flames career.
• Heaven’s seventh fall win was in two sets (6-1, 6-1) over his counterpart, Janes.
• Liberty and Penn State squared off at the Liberty Fall Hidden Dual exactly a year ago today (Nov. 5, 2021).
The third and final day will pit Liberty and Commonwealth foe Old Dominion against each other. The hidden dual match will begin at 3 p.m.
10 a.m. – Clemson vs. Penn State
3 p.m. – Liberty vs. Old Dominion
Live Video: https://web.playsight.com/facility/liberty-university-tennis/home
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Tournament Website: https://bit.ly/3t2pKzD