JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (September 16, 2008) -Competing in its first tournament since the second-round of the NCAA Singles and Doubles Championships last May, the ETSU men's tennis team wrapped up its first fall tournament at the University of Virginia Fall Classic, in Charlottesville, Va., last weekend.
The Bucs had a strong showing in the 17-team field that featured seven players that boast a ITA top-125 ranking or better.
In the A-1 singles bracket, sophomore Matej Zlatkovic (Ljubljana, Slovenia) was matched against Virginia's David Nguyen in the first round. Zlatkovic took the first set before Nguyen, who was playing on his home court, rallied for a come from behind win for the three-set victory 4-6, 7-6, 6-1. Zlatkovic would fall to the consolation bracket, where Evgeny Slesarev of Gardner-Webb would eliminate the Slovenia native 7-6, 6-4.
In bracket A-2 singles play, ETSU would rebound nicely as junior newcomer Grega Teraz (Gorenjska, Slovenia) would drop his first match to Eastern Kentucky's Alex Das Izquierdo, before getting hot the remainder of the tournament. In the consultation bracket Teraz would go on a tear, defeating Atlantic Sun rival Maksin Levanovich, of Stetson, in straight sets 6-1, 6-1. In his semifinal match, Teraz would go on to defeat Columbia's Bogdan Borta, before dismissing Nebraska's Francois Van Impe 6-4, 7-5 in the finals.
Like his teammate junior Daniel Isaza (Medellin, Columbia) dropped his first round match in bracket B-1 to Binghamton's Sven Vlodedgraven, before showing his character and toughness by winning the consolation side. Isaza would blow by William & Mary's llja Some 6-1, 6-2 and Nebraska's Hendrik Stahmer 6-0, 6-3 for a finals showdown with JMU's Jared Robinson. Isaza would have little trouble in the first set winning 6-2, however Robinson would not go down easily taking the second set 2-6. In the third and final set both players would battle back and forth, but like the Bucs have shown so many times Isaza would prove to be too much for Robinson, winning the tiebreaker 10-6.
Another new face for ETSU this season is freshman Sander Gille (Kuringen, Belgium). This newcomer didn't waste anytime; as Gille would not drop a set on his way earning top honors in singles bracket C. Gillie knocked off Georgetown's David Tillem in straight sets 6-4, 6-0 and Virginia Tech's Zachary Pine 6-4, 6-1. In the finals Gille would again be too tough to handle as Arnav Jain of Binghamton dropped the first set 5-2 before retiring from play.
Rounding out singles player for ETSU was freshman Robin Asker (Tyreso, Sweden). Asker lost to Christopher Swanteson of Stetson, before bouncing back to defeat Taylor Boney of Nebraska 6-1, 6-1. However Virginia Tech's Eduardo Pinto would eliminate Asker in the semifinals 6-0, before Asker would retire.
In doubles action ETSU would drop its first round match in bracket A, as the team of Teraz and freshman Charles Bottoni (Bois Guillaume, France) dropped to Nebraska's Paar and Bendheim and Columbia's Nichifor and Schneiderman. Also in pair's play ETSU's tandem of Zlatkovic and Gillie would lose to Georgetown's team of Gross and Samuelson.
ETSU men's tennis team returns to action with a September 19th weekend tournament at the Southern Intercollegiate Classic, in Athens, Ga.