Men’s tennis ends winning streak with loss to the Bulldogs

The+Appalachian+Online

The Appalachian Online

Jess Lyons

On Sunday, Appalachian State University took on the Bulldogs in their home opener of the season at the Deer Valley Racquet Club. The team swept the doubles point with Jan-Willem Kleynhans and Scott Webster finishing the No. 2 seed first with a 7-2 victory, Oliver Casey and Jack Maddocks finishing the No. 1 game 7-4, and Zach Bost and Trey Morris finishing up the sweep in the No. 3 seed with a 6-4 victory.

After securing points by sweeping doubles and the first singles match, the Mountaineers lost their early lead in a 4-3 defeat to University of North Carolina at Asheville. The loss puts the teams record at 2-2 before they start on their 11-game streak of away matches.

App State started the singles matches off strong with a win from the No. 3 match where Webster dominated the Bulldogs’ John Swindler in a 7-5, 6-1 victory. After Webster’s win, the Mountaineers struggled to win the two single matches needed to win the overall match.

“I think we played doubles pretty well, doubles is our strong point. We’re struggling with the singles, but they went and fought pretty hard,” Kleynhans said.

The No. 1 game finished second, with Casey falling in a 6-4, 6-2 defeat. Things began to look up when Maddocks won the first set of his match 6-0, but UNCA’s Thomas Orestis-Panoulas pushed back winning the second set 6-3, and then defeating Maddocks in the tie breaker 6-2.

Asheville stole the overall victory with wins in the No. 4 match with a 6-2, 6-4 decision over Kleynhans, and the No. 5 match with a 6-3, 6-4 win over Bost.

Despite the loss, Morris still fought hard in the No. 6 match and dominated the Bulldogs with a quick 6-1, 6-4 victory over UNCA’s Olly Cull. Morris gave App their second and final win in the singles matches resulting in the 4-3 overall match score.

“We played good doubles, but they’re a good indoor team in singles, very big serves and they come to the net a lot so you don’t have much time. It’s hard to get a rhythm,” head coach Bob Lake said.

App State will continue their season on the road in Johnston City, Tennessee against ETSU on Feb. 6, with the match set to begin at 4 p.m.

Story by: Jess Lyons, Senior Sports Reporter