KENNESAW, Ga. - A week after picking up the first conference win of the season, the Lipscomb men’s tennis team went on the road to defeat Kennesaw State 4-3.
The Bisons (8-11 overall, 2-4 in the A-Sun) were able to seal a tight singles point and that proved to be vital with the teams splitting singles play at the Betty Siegel Student Center. Kennesaw State falls to 9-9, 1-5 in the conference.
Lipscomb head coach Mario Hernandez knew to expect a close match and liked the fight he saw from his guys to pick up the win.
“A lot of guts all the way around,” Hernandez said. “It was a tight doubles point but the guys pulled through.
“KSU is a tough team and we always have tough matches with them. We knew it would be a tight one today.”
The doubles point was as tight as possible with all three matches being decided by a single break.
With the teams splitting at the top two lines, Thais Minet and Daniel Cardenas were able to come up with the match win over Lucas de Torres Curt and Jorge Wilton to seal the point for the Bisons.
It was the middle of the lineup that produced wins for Lipscomb in singles play, picking up wins at lines two, three and four.
At the second spot, Alejandro Manzanares picked up the first win with a 6-1, 6-4 result over Manuel Castellanos.
It took three sets to decide things at the third and fourth spots, starting with Philippe Courteau.
Courteau split the first two sets with de Torres Curt and the third line before dropping just one game in the third set to take the match 6-2, 4-6, 6-1.
Cardenas continued his big day with the match-clinching win at the fourth line. The sophomore didn’t drop a game to David Durham in the first set before losing the second set. Cardenas would bounce back in the third to take the match 6-0, 5-7, 6-2.
After a tough start to the season for Cardenas, Hernandez was happy to see him step up for the win.
“He was a guy that had struggled a bit early on,” Hernandez said. “He’s really been pushing to get himself into form. For him to be the one to clinch it is a huge confidence boost.”
With back-to-back conference wins for the first time in three years, Hernandez has liked the fight he’s seen from his guys to get to this point.
“We knew all the way through the year that we were a tough team,” Hernandez said. “We just weren’t playing up to our potential. Now we’ve gotten over the hump. That gives us the ability to relax and focus on the tennis.”
Lipscomb will now travel to Tuscaloosa where they will face No. 45 Vanderbilt for their final regular season match.
Hernandez feels his team is finally seeing the reward of their work but wants them to continue the work that got them there as they head into tournament play.
“The guys are excited and having a good time,” Hernandez said. “This is how college tennis should be if you put in the work and our guys have put in the work. Now you just keep preparing as hard as possible.”
Lipscomb 4 – Kennesaw State 3
- Manuel Castellanos/Simon Pritchard (KSU) def. Philippe Courteau/Alejandro Manzanares (LIP) 6-4
- John Tougher/Rob Mitchell (LIP) def. David Durham/Drew Wendel (KSU) 6-4
- Daniel Cardenas/Thais Minet (LIP) def. Lucas de Torres Curt/Jorge Wilton (KSU) 6-4
- Simon Pritchard (KSU) def. Rob Mitchell (LIP) 6-4, 6-2
- Alejandro Manzanares (LIP) def. Manuel Castellanos (KSU) 6-1, 6-4
- Philippe Courteau (LIP) def. Lucas de Torres Curt (KSU) 6-2, 4-6, 6-1
- Daniel Cardenas (LIP) def. David Durham (KSU) 6-0, 5-7, 6-2
- Sam Slade (KSU) def. John Tougher (LIP) 6-4, 6-0
- Drew Wednel (KSU) def. Thais Minet (LIP) 6-2, 6-0