FORT MYERS, Fla. – After a two-week break from competitive action, the FGCU men’s tennis team returns to play as it welcomes Florida A&M for a dual match under the lights of the Tennis Complex on Saturday at 5 p.m.
“Tomorrow is going to be a tough match for us,” head coach C.J. Weber said. “The past two matches we’ve played against Florida A&M had a final score of 4-3, with us winning last year but losing the year prior. It’s nice to be back at the FGCU Tennis Complex to begin this very important part of our season.”
FGCU enters Saturday’s contest at 2-5 while FAMU sits a 4-7. The Rattlers hold the all-time series with three wins over the two that the Eagles have tallied.
Traveling to Tallahassee to face the Rattlers in a dual match last season, FGCU posted a 4-3 win in comeback fashion. After dropping the doubles point, the Eagles were forced to take four of the six singles matches in order to come away with the win and did just that, as Dean Tsamas (Lexington, Ky./Henry Clay HS), Gabe Echeverry (Popayan, Colombia/Gimnasio Calibio), Michael Beiler (Palm Harbor, Fla./Dunedin HS) and Lance Lvovsky (Dania, Fla./Broward Virtual School/Jacksonville) were all victorious. With the lead going back-and-forth all afternoon the score was tied 3-3 as the No. 4 match featuring Lvovsky was entering a third set for the ultimate decision. After dropping the first set, 6-3, Lvovsky rallied right back with a commanding 6-1 victory in the second. Despite having all the momentum after the previous set, Lvovsky fell behind 4-0 in the third, but fought back with seven of the last eight games to secure FGCU’s hard-fought win.
RATTLED BY A-SUN
Facing a trio from the Atlantic Sun Conference already this season, FAMU hasn’t been able to hold its own being handed a loss by each of the three. Not only are the Rattlers winless against the conference, but they have taken just three points from A-Sun members all year. With their most recent loss being a 5-0 shutout to Kennesaw State, the Rattlers were defeated 2-4 to Mercer and 1-4 to then-No.71 North Florida earlier in the season.
EAGLES OVER OWLS
Their last time out, the Eagles picked up their first road win of the season upending FAU 6-1 earlier this month. After taking the doubles point, FGCU picked up five wins in singles play, but even better than their handful of victories was how they were earned. With half of the matches going three sets, the Green and Blue showed the close losses they suffered previously are becoming a thing of the past as they came out on top in every tiebreak, for the first time this season.
After Saturday’s match the Eagles will begin conference play as they welcome UNF to The Nest on Mar. 22 at Noon. For complete coverage of FGCU men’s tennis against FAMU, follow us on Twitter @FGCU_MTEN and visit www.FGCUAthletics.com where full recaps and results will be available at the end of each day.