April 15, 2012

Tech completes perfect sweep of OVC, tops SIUE 7-0 for ninth straight

EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. -- The Tennessee Tech tennis team completed its 2012 sweep of all eight Ohio Valley Conference opponents by claiming a 7-0 victory Sunday at SIU Edwardsville. The Golden Eagles wrapped up the regular season 10-7 overall and 8-0 within the league.

It is Tech's first OVC championship since the 2008 season, and sends the Golden Eagles into the conference tournament next week on a nine-match winning streak after starting the year with a 1-7 mark.

Four Golden Eagles claimed straight set wins, while freshman Alejandro Augusto and senior Justin Kirstein finished with perfect 8-0 marks in singles play.

Augusto took a 6-1, 6-2 win over Devan Faulkenberg at the No. 3 position, while Artem Tarasov, another first-semester freshman, claimed a 6-2, 6-3 win over Jacob Tanulanond. Another straight-set win came at No. 6 singles when Vasily Eremeev beat Dylan Reed, 6-2, 6-4.

Junior Syrym Abduhkalikov won in straight sets in the No. 1 position, outlasting Morten Christensen with a tie-breaker in the first set, 7-6 (7-5), before winning the clincher, 6-4.

Kirstein kept his OVC mark perfect but needed three sets to do so, topping Stephen Washuta, 6-2, 2-6, 6-2.

Alex Chen was also pushed an extra set by Nicolas Vincent at No. 2 after splitting the first two, 5-7 and 7-5. He won the third set, 1-0 with an 11-9 tie-breaker.

As the top seed in the OVC Tournamament, the Golden Eagles have a bye for Friday's first round matches. Tech will play Saturday in the seminfinals against the winner of the Morehead State/Jacksonville State match. That contest is scheduled for 10 a.m.

The three-day event, which is being hosted by Eastern Illinois, will be held April 20-22 at the Centennial Sportsplex in Nashville, Tenn.

A win Saturday would put Tech into the championship match Sunday at 10 a.m., with the winner receiving the league's automatic entry into the NCAA Tournament.

Tennessee Tech 7, SIUE 0
Apr 15, 2012 at Edwardsville, Ill.

Singles competition

1. ABDUKHALIKOV, Syrym (TTU) def. Christensen, Morten (SIUE) 7-6 (7-5), 6-4

2. CHEN, Alex (TTU) def. Vincent, Nicolas (SIUE) 5-7, 7-5, 1-0 (11-9)

3. AUGUSTO, Alejandro (TTU) def. Faulkenberg, Devan (SIUE) 6-1, 6-2

4. TARASOV, Artem (TTU) def. Tanulanond, Jacob (SIUE) 6-2, 6-3

5. KIRSTEIN, Justin (TTU) def. Washuta, Stephen (SIUE) 6-2, 2-6, 6-2

6. EREMEEV, Vasily (TTU) def. Reed, Dylan (SIUE) 6-2, 6-4

 
Doubles competition
1. TANULANOND, Jacob/WASHUTA, Stephen (SIUE) vs. ABDUKHALIKOV, Syrym/CHEN, Alex (TTU) unfinished
2. TARASOV, Artem/EREMEEV, Vasily (TTU) def. CHRISTENSEN, Morten/REED, Dylan (SIUE) 8-5
3. VINCENT, Nicolas/FAULKENBERG, Devan (SIUE) vs. AUGUSTO, Alejandro/KIRSTEIN, Justin (TTU) unfinished
 
Match Notes
Tennessee Tech 10-7, 8-0 OVC
SIUE 5-12, 2-7 O


2012 OVC MEN'S TENNIS CHAMPIONSHIP SCHEDULE

FIRST ROUND – FRIDAY, APRIL 20
Match 1 - #3 Eastern Kentucky vs. #6 Murray State  – 10 a.m.
Match 2 - #4 Jacksonville State vs. #5 Morehead State – 10 a.m.

SEMIFINALS – SATURDAY, APRIL 21
Match 3 - #2 Austin Peay vs. Match 1 winner – 10 a.m
Match 4 - #1 Tennessee Tech vs. Match 2 winner – 10 a.m.

CHAMPIONSHIP – SUNDAY, APRIL 22
Match 5 – Match 3 winner vs. Match 4 winner – 10 a.m.