LEXINGTON, Ky. – Senior Lucas Oliveira secured the match winning point as the 41st-ranked Virginia Tech men’s tennis team defeated No. 22 Michigan, 4-2 on Friday afternoon in the opening round of the 2013 NCAA Men’s Tennis Championship at the Boone Tennis Center in Lexington, Ky.
“What a great win for our program,” said Virginia Tech head coach Jim Thompson. “We have been fighting hard all year and have had a lot of 4-3 matches go against us. Our guys did a great job battling today and we are proud of them.”
The Hokies fell behind after dropping the doubles point to Michigan. The Wolverines claimed wins on courts one and three to secure the point and take a 1-0 lead going into singles.
Tech tied it up at 1-1 with a win from sophomore Hunter Koontz in the No. 4. Koontz downed 125th-ranked Vlad Stefan in straight sets with scores of 6-3, 6-3.
The Wolverines reclaimed the lead, going up 2-1 with a win in the No. 1. Tech’s 61st-ranked Contini battled against Michigan’s 13th-ranked Evan King to three sets. After faltering in the first set, 6-4, Contini came back to win the second set 6-1, but King rallied to secure the 6-1 win.
Tech again tied it up as freshman Joao Monteiro claimed the win in exciting fashion. Monteiro dropped the opening set, 6-2, and trailed 5-2 in the second set before rallying back to win 7-5. In the deciding set, Monteiro again fell behind (4-2), but again answered to secure the win, 6-4.
The Hokies’ No. 97 Andreas Bjerrehus put Tech on top 3-2 as he held off Michigan’s Alex Petrone in the No. 2 singles. Bjerrehus took the first set, 6-3, but was edged in the second set 7-6(3). The Tech freshman responded to win the final set 6-4 to clinch the point.
Oliveira’s match in the No. 5 was the deciding point for the Hokies. The senior defeated Michael Zhu in straight sets, 6-1, 6-4.
Virginia Tech will face the winner of No. 8 Kentucky versus Western Michigan. The second round match is slated for 2 p.m. on Saturday, May 11 at the Boone Tennis Center.
1. #13 Evan King (UM) def. #61 Amerigo Contini (VT) 6-4, 1-6, 6-1
2. #97 Andreas Bjerrehus (VT) def. Alex Petrone (UM) 6-3, 6-7(3), 6-4
3. Hunter Koontz (VT) def. #125 Vlad Stefan (UM) 6-3, 6-3
4. Joao Monteiro (VT) def. Barrett Franks (UM) 2-6, 7-5, 6-4
5. Lucas Oliveira (VT) def. Michael Zhu (UM) 6-1, 6-4
6. Aaron Gomez (VT) vs. Alex Buzzi (UM) 2-6, 3-1, dnf
Order of finish: 3,1,4,2,5*
1. #57 Buzzi/King (UM) def. #80 Bjerrehus/Koontz (VT) 8-3
2. Contini/Marko Lovrinovic (VT) vs. Petrone/Zhu (UM) 4-4 dnf
3. Shaun Bernstein/Franks (UM) def. Monteiro/Oliveira (VT) 8-4
Order of finish: 3,1*
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