DURHAM, N.C. (Jan. 17, 2010) - With the first two days of the season now underway the No. 62 ETSU men's tennis team struggled out of the gate, as head coach Yaser Zaatini's club managed a total of just six wins over the past two days at the Duke Invitational.
"After the great fall we had I wasn't expecting us to come out so flat," said Zaatini. "Maybe at this point with school starting later and stuff I'm expecting too much from our guys. We have to come together as a group in order to be successful. We have a lot of talent on this team, but the way we are playing right now that's simply not good enough. To put this in perspective I'd say we are at best a middle of the pack team in the A-Sun. I know some of our guys like Grega and Sander are playing well, but this is a team sport and everyone has to pick it up right now. That goes from the freshmen to the seniors. Hopefully we can figure it out soon and get better tomorrow."
Match One: No. 62 ETSU vs. No. 29 UNC
Led by sophomore Sander Gille (Kuringen, Belgium), the Bucs picked up three wins against regional rival North Carolina Saturday evening inside the Sheffield Indoor Tennis Center. Gille, along with freshman Jesus Bandres (Caracas, Venezuela), earned ETSU's only doubles victory as the No. 52-ranked Buc duo made quick work of UNC's Zach Hunter and Alex Rafiee, 8-2.
In singles action Gille continued his winning ways as the second year Buccaneer cruised past North Carolina senior Andrew Crone in straight sets 6-4, 6-4. ETSU's only other win on Saturday would come as fellow classmate Robin Akser (Ornskoldsvik, Sweden), earned a strong straight set victory over the Tar Heels' Kyle Baker, 7-6, 6-4.
5 Hernandez/Crone (UNC) def. Teraz/Bottoni (ETSU) 9-8(5)
4 Ahari/Boyajian (UNC) def. Akser/Isaza (ETSU) 8-1
3 No. 52 Gille/Bandres (ETSU) def. Hunter/Rafiee (UNC) 8-2
2 Baker/Mojica (UNC) def. Bonnevalle/Weintraub (ETSU) 8-5
10 Jose Hernandez (UNC) def. No. 82 Grega Teraz (ETSU) 6-2, 7-5
9 Brennan Boyajian (UNC) def. No. 51Jesus Bandera (ETSU) 6-1, 6-2
8 Sander Gille (ETSU) def. Andrew Crone (UNC) 6-4, 6-4
7 Cam Ahari (UNC) def. No. 89 Charles Bottoni (ETSU) 6-3, 6-2
6 Alex Rafiee (UNC) def. Daniel Isazza (ETSU) 6-1, 6-0
5 Luke Mojica (UNC) def. Jeremy Bonnevalle (ETSU) 6-1, 6-7, 6-3
4 Robin Akser (ETSU) def. Kyle Baker (UNC) 7-6, 6-4
3 William Parker (UNC) def. Juan Ramirez (ETSU) 7-5, 7-5
2 Zach Hunter (UNC) def. Ofir Weintraub (ETSU) 6-1, 6-2
Match Two: No. 62 ETSU vs. No. 19 Duke
Like their opening contest ETSU's came out slow against host and nationally ranked No. 19 Duke. The Blue Devils earned two out of the three doubles matches, while taking four out of the six individual singles contests. The Bucs lone victory in team action came as Gille and Bandres stayed on a roll with an 8-3 victory over Aaron Carpenter and David Lue.
After going winless in day one junior Charles Bottoni (Bois Guilaume, France), rebounded for his first win of the new season with a strong effort against Duke's second seeded junior Jared Pinsky. No. 89-ranked Buc held serve to take the first set in a 7-5 tiebreaker, before outlasting the Duke upperclassman 6-4 in the second.
The only other ETSU player to earn a victory on Sunday was freshman Juan Ramierz (Asuncion, Paraguay). The first-year Buc picked up five points on the day with a long three set win over Duke's David Lee. After Ramierz and Lee split the opening two sets 6-3, 5-7 ETSU's newcomer railed to take the final deciding set 6-3.
5 Arnould/Pinsky (Duke) def. Bottoni/Teraz (ETSU) 8-6
4 Marchese/Michel (Duke) def. Akser/Isaza (ETSU) 9-7
3 #52 Bandres/Gille (ETSU) def. Carpenter/ Lue (Duke) 8-3
10 #62 Dylan Arnould (Duke) def. Sander Gille (ETSU) 6-4, 2-6, 6-2
9 #89 Charles Bottoni (ETSU) def. Jared Pinsky (Duke) 7-5, 6-4
8 Luke Marchese (Duke) def. Robin Akser (ETSU) 4-6, 7-6 (8-6), 6-2
7 Alain Michel (Duke) def. Jeremy Bonnevalle (ETSU) 6-3, 6-7 (5-7), 6-2
6 Aaron Carpenter (Duke) def. Daniel Isaza (ETSU) 6-0, 6-4
5 Juan Ramirez (ETSU) def. David Lue (Duke) 6-3, 5-7, 6-3
Monday will be the final day of the Duke Invitational with ETSU wrapping the three-day event against No. 70 Elon.
For more information on the reigning four-time Atlantic Sun Conference champion men's tennis team, please visit www.ETSUBucs.com.