Ribeiro advances to finals as three Bucs reach quarters
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (September 18, 2011) – The ETSU men’s tennis team concluded its first ITA sanctioned fall tournament of 2011 on Sunday, finishing a quality weekend at the UT Fall Invitational inside Tennessee’s Barksdale Stadium and Tyson Park.
Newcomer Rogerro Ribeiro advanced all the way to the final of the white draw, splitting the first two sets and forcing a tiebreak in the final set, before finally falling to Tennessee’s Bryan Swartz (3-6, 6-4, 6-7 (1-7)). Senior Robin Akser (Ornskoldsvik, Sweden) nearly met with Ribeiro in the white flight final, but also fell to Swartz in a very competitive three-set semifinal match (3-6, 6-3, 4-6).
Senior Jeremy Bonnevalle (Keerbergen, Belgium) and sophomore Roger Ordeig (Gurb, Spain) competed in the orange flight, with Bonnevalle winning his first two matches in straight sets to reach the flight’s quarterfinals.
Competition began on Friday at Tyson Park with Ribeiro and Akser starting play for ETSU in the white flight at 9:30 a.m., while Bonnevalle and Ordeig started an hour and a half later, at 11 a.m., in the orange flight.
The Bucs began the fall season on the right note, as Ribeiro defeated Wright State’s Sean Yun in straight sets (6-2, 6-2), while at the same time Akser defeated Chattanooga’s Ankit Chopra (6-3, 6-2). As those matches ended, Bonnevalle and Ordeig followed suit as Bonnevalle took care of Wake Forest’s Amoghake Prabhakar (6-3, 6-0), and Ordeig came away victorious over Davidson’s Ethan Kallick (6-3, 4-6, 6-2).
Friday’s afternoon session began with Ribeiro coming back from one set down and defeating Tennessee’s Taylor Patrick in a third-set tiebreak (3-6, 6-2, 7-6 (7-4)) to advance to Saturday’s quarterfinals. Akser had an easier go through his second round match, defeating Winthrop’s Rich Meade in two sets (6-3, 6-2).
In the first day’s final afternoon session, Bonnevalle ousted Chattanooga’s Manuel Barroetavena (6-3, 6-1) to advance to the orange draw’s quarterfinals, but Ordeig would not be as fortunate. The sophomore Spaniard ran into Tennessee’s Hunter Reese, dropping a close first set before eventually falling (6-4, 6-0).
Barksdale Stadium then hosted the quarterfinals of the orange and white singles flights.
Akser, Ribeiro and Bonnevalle all got underway at 10 a.m. on Saturday. The only Buccaneer remaining in the orange flight, Bonnevalle took on Winthop’s Dejon Bivens, but fell in straight sets (6-3, 6-4). With the white flight title still in sight, both Akser and Ribeiro kept the Buccaneer hopes alive. Akser defeated Lipscomb’s Stuart Tierney in straight sets (6-4, 7-5) and Ribeiro did the same against Xavier’s Richard Canelas (7-6, 6-3).
With both Bucs advancing to the white flight’s semifinals, Akser and Ribeiro were staring down a matchup amongst themselves in Sunday’s final.
That matchup would not come to fruition.
Ribeiro took on Eastern Kentucky’s Parul Verma in his afternoon semifinal, and defeated the in-state foe (6-4, 2-6, 6-1). Akser then faced Swartz in his semifinal, but could not complete the comeback after dropping the first set.
Ribeiro then met with Swartz on Sunday morning, but suffered the same fate as Akser as Tennessee won both the orange and white flights of their home tournament.
The Bucs also competed in the orange and goodfriend flights of doubles play, but only came away with one consolation victory by the team of Akser and Ribeiro.
Up next for the ETSU men’s tennis team will be a pair of tournaments, as the Southern Intercollegiate and UVA Ranked + 1 will each take place on Friday, September 23. The Southern Intercollegiate will be held in Athens, Ga. and the UVA Ranked + 1 will be hosted by the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Va.
For more information on ETSU tennis, please visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the tennis links.