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ETSU beats Stetson, advances to A-Sun Championship Final
Saturday, April 19, 2014
No. 1 ETSU to square off with No. 2 UNF for trip to NCAA Tournament; Bucs look to clinch eighth straight A-Sun Tournament title
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (April 19, 2014) - The ETSU men's tennis team will have an opportunity to settle some unfinished business Sunday, April 19 when the top-seeded Bucs take on No. 2 seed North Florida in the Atlantic Sun Men's Tennis Championship Final. The two teams' regular season match-up on March 28 was cancelled due to rain.
The Buccaneers (13-8) advanced to the program's eighth consecutive A-Sun Championship Final by beating No. 4 Stetson, 4-0, Saturday. With the victory, ETSU extended its season-best win streak to ten matches.
"We took an early hard punch on the chin," ETSU head coach Yaser Zaatini said. "Stetson came out hungrier than I have ever seen them, but we withstood the storm and fought back hard. It was a great team effort today. Everybody defended their spot brilliantly."
ETSU began the day by taking the doubles point, with Sebastian Yllera (Cinco Saltos, Argentina) and Conner Huertas (Lima, Peru) beating Stetson's Simon Julin and Graham Ball, 8-4, at No. 3 doubles. The win was the duo's seventh consecutive victory.
Freshmen tandem Diego Nunez (Monterrey, Mexico) and Ismael Merino (Lima, Peru) then took down Chester Espie and Laurynas Antropikas, 8-4, at the No. 1 spot to allow the Bucs to head into singles play with a 1-0 advantage.
Yllera and Merino pushed ETSU's lead to 3-0 by winning at No. 3 and No. 4 singles, respectively. Both Yllera and Merino have won a team-best nine consecutive singles matches.
Senior Roger Ordeig (Gurb, Spain) then put the finishing touches on the Bucs' victory with a 6-4, 6-1 win over Egor Panyushkin at the No. 6 singles spot.
No. 65 ETSU 4, Stetson 0
Atlantic Sun Championship Final - Jacksonville, Fla.
Sunday, April 20
No. 1 ETSU vs. No. 2 UNF - 11:00 a.m. - LIVE STATS
Fittingly, Sunday's championship final will feature the A-Sun's two ranked teams, ETSU and North Florida. This season marks the third consecutive year the Bucs and Ospreys (14-9) have met in the tournament final.
The Bucs beat UNF in the A-Sun Championship Final in 2012 and 2013, with both matches being played in Johnson City. This time, however, UNF will enjoy homecourt advantage.
The 65th-ranked Buccaneers will go toe-to-toe with No. 66 UNF, with an NCAA Tournament berth on the line.
The Ospreys outlasted FGCU, 4-2, in the tournament semifinals. View the complete results of the match here.
Like ETSU, UNF has won ten consecutive matches.
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