Valdosta, GA - Valdosta State tennis played West Alabama in a Gulf South Conference match Friday and it almost looked like a carbon copy of VSU’s last match. The men dominated, and the women just barely were outmanned.
The No. 2 Blazers swept West Alabama while the women’s team fell just short against the Tigers, 5-4. The results lead VSU’s men’s team to a 2-0 record while the women stand at 0-2.
Daniel Dueren and Frank Sickman were the first of the men’s team to register a point with an 8-2 victory over Juan Felipe Tellez and Lucas Cruz. The No. 3 team, Philip Pakebusch and Luis Loeffler, playing in top doubles, made short work of Santiago Lopez and Wade Covington, 8-3. Finally, Bernard Wallner and Konstantin Kutschenko defeated Lucas Nunez and Clay Cooke, 8-2.
In singles play, all the ranked Blazers earned a point. No. 8 Dueren and No. 22 Loeffler both won in matching sets of 6-0, 6-1, over Tellez and Covington respectively. Pakebusch only played one set against Lopez, but outlasted him, 7-5.
In the bottom three spots, Sickman stood out with a 6-0, 6-0 sweep of Cooke. Kutschenko defeated Cruz, 6-1, 6-0, while Wallner put away Nunes, 6-1, 6-2.
For the women, Valdosta State started strong in doubles for the second consecutive day. Both teams of Alina Nagel and Jessica Tuggle and Nicole Hernandez and Leslie Roberge both earned victories for the early 2-0 lead. Tuggle and Nagle beat Natalia Cardenas and Angy Cuellar, 8-5, while Hernandez/Roberge took care of Katy Shoptaugh and Dasha Popova, 8-3.
Two Blazers were able to notch wins in singles play. Nagel, playing in the top spot, and Tuggle, in third position, beat Cardenas and Emily Gerding respectively. Nagel swept Cardenas, 6-0, 6-0. Tuggle, meanwhile, went to three sets with Gerding. Tuggle won the first, but Gerding bounced back to take the second set convincingly, 6-1. Tuggle had an equally impressive showing in the third, to clinch it, 6-4, 1-6, 6-2.
With Tuggle’s point, Valdosta State was tied due to being shorthanded and forfeiting points at the sixth singles spot and the third doubles spot. Jayhna Pope was VSU’s final chance, but Popova won in two sets, 6-1, 6-3.
Blazer tennis returns to action Friday against regional rival Rollins at 2 p.m.