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Men’s tennis takes four matches over break

(Photo by Andrew Noble)

By: Josh Brannock, Sports Editor

The No. 50 UNF men’s tennis program will look to continue its hot streak after winning four out of its last five matches during its progression through its conference schedule.

The Ospreys hosted five straight home matches, which included two matches against top-ranked teams and two matches versus conference foes.

UNF started Spring Break off with a match at home versus Troy University March 10. The team dominated the Trojans en route to a 7-0 sweep to start off break.

The Ospreys’ next two opponents were No. 51 South Alabama and No. 39 UNC Wilmington.

The nail-biter match against the University of South Alabama March 12 saw four of the six singles matches into the third set. UNF managed to pick up the doubles point to start off the day with a one point advantage over the Jaguars.

Julien Belair won his match in two quick sets, earning UNF the first point in singles. After the Belair victory, USA managed to snag a point away from UNF, and the match was 2-1. Moritz Buerchner gave the Ospreys a comfortable 3-1 cushion when he picked up a win in the No. 1 match in three sets.

The USA Jaguars didn’t stay back for long, closing the gap to just one point again. With the match at 3-2 in favor of UNF and the Ospreys needing just one more point to secure the win, Junior Leonardo Nahar defeated USA’s Dauw Kruger in the No. 6 match to clinch the win for UNF. The final score of the match was 4-3.

(Photo by Andrew Noble)

The next day, UNF hosted UNC Wilmington in what would turn out to be another thriller. The Ospreys needed four wins in the singles matches to snag the 4-3 victory away from the Seahawks.

The Ospreys started the day swept in the doubles matches and down 1-0. The singles matches went back and forth, and once again, the Ospreys looked to Nahar for a match-sealing victory. With the teams tied 3-3, Nahar went to the third set with UNCW’s Kaue Pereira.

Nahar outlasted Pereira winning the final set 7-6 (7-4). With the win, the Ospreys managed to pull off two wins over ranked opponents before heading into conference play.
To start play in the Atlantic Sun, UNF hosted USC Upstate March 16. The Ospreys would win comfortably against the Spartans, 6-1. USCU’s lone point came from the No. 3 singles match where Gonzalo Blanco beat Norbert Nemcesk in two sets.

The next day, the Ospreys hosted five-time defending A-Sun champion ETSU. UNF started the match off winning the doubles point and headed into the singles matches up. However, the point wouldn’t be much help for UNF; it only managed to take two of the six singles matches and fell to the Buccaneers 4-3.

The Ospreys will look to regain composure and hop back onto the winning track. The team will host Elon University March 21 before taking to the road.

UNF will play in a home away from home game, traveling to JU March 24 to continue its A-Sun schedule.

With the wins this past week, UNF jumped from being unranked to No. 50 in the latest ITA rankings released March 20.

Email Josh Brannock at [email protected].
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