BELMONT, NC - The Belmont Abbey Men's tennis team won a thrilling 5-4 contest this afternoon over Limestone. The match was tied at 4-4 when James Delaney had a showdown against Limestone's Ortega at #1 singles. The two went back and forth, and Delaney's victory sealed the match for the Abbey, now 6-5 on the year, with a 1-0 conference mark. The Saints now stand at 1-3 in 2017 and 0-1 in Conference Carolinas play.
Freshman George Barfoot had an impressive 6-3, 6-1 win at #4 singles. Freshmen Zachary Blythe and Carlos Nolasco also posted wins at #5 and 6 singles. In doubles play, the Abbey got a win at the #3 spot as Blythe and Grant Goldin teamed up for an 8-5 victory.
1. Federico Garnier (LC) def. Juan Baez (BAC) 6-1, 6-0
2. Stefano Soares (LC) def. Grant Goldin (BAC) 6-1, 6-3
3. James Delaney (BAC) def. Guillermo Ortega (LC) 4-6, 6-1, 6-1
4. George Barfoot (BAC) def. Pierluigi Neri (LC) 6-3, 6-1
5. Zach Blythe (BAC) def. Giacomo Campus (LC) 6-1, 6-1
6. Carlos Nolasco (BAC) def. Mark Carnes (LC) 6-4, 6-0
1. Stefano Soares/Federico Garnier (LC) def. Juan Baez/James Delaney (BAC) 8-5
2. Mark Carnes/Pierluigi Neri (LC) def. Tomas Pardo/Michal Rapsik 8-7
3. Zach Blythe/Grant Goldin (BAC) def. Giacomo Campus/Guillermo Ortega (LC) 8-5
Head Coach Michael Salomon commented on today's match: ""We came out and gave a fantastic effort today. We did a great job competing in doubles and fell just short at #2 with a back forth match where both teams had match points. I want to give Limestone a lot of credit for the way they competed today. They brought a great attitude and fought hard in their matches as we have come to expect from them year in and year out. James Delaney had a fantastic come from behind at #3 singles to clinch the match in our favor today 5-4. Last year, James had a tough 7-6 loss in the clinching match in the 3rd set after having match points, so today was an extra special win for him. We brought an unbelievable intense match environment and learned a lot about what it means to be a true team where every player contributes to our success. We're really looking forward to building on the progress we made today as we move throughout the rest of the season."
The Crusaders will be back in action on Saturday, March 4, when they face Flagler in Sumter, SC.