After losing its previous four matches, the No. 49 men’s tennis team finally got a win Tuesday by beating American University 5-2 in the last match of the regular season.
The Hurricanes, who have been plagued with injuries, have their No. 1 singles player, Josh Cohen, back but they are still missing Tim Krebs from the line-up. Cohen dominated with his consistent groundstrokes in his singles match over Tushar Garg 6-1, 6-3.
“I think I did considerably well under the circumstances,” Cohen said. “I lost my last three matches. It’s always good to get a win.”
Colin Purcell played well in the No. 4 position in place of the injured Krebs, beating Juancarlo Vazquez 6-3, 6-4. Purcell has won 16 of his last 18 matches in singles.
No. 2 Eric Hechtman beat Jonah Fliegelman 6-4, 7-5. Hechtman said he hit the ball low because Fliegelman was not bending his knees.
“I played pretty good today,” Hechtman said. “My drop shots were working pretty well and so were my lobs.”
Jeremiah Fuller came up with the last singles win for the ‘Canes at No. 5, defeating Ruben Rivero, 6-3, 6-4.
John Hoyes lost at No.3 singles to Guillaume Tarralle after he won the first set 6-4. Tarralle won the second set 6-2. The ‘Canes had enough points already to ensure a win, so the coaches decided to let the Hoyes and Tarralle play a tie break instead of a third set. Tarralle won 10-8.
P.J. Passalacqua, the red shirt freshman, had to default in his singles match at 6-2 against the Eagles’ Sebastian Proisy. Passalacqua did win his No. 3 doubles match alongside Cohen. The victory over Fliegelman and Rivero was Passalacqua’s first win playing collegiate tennis.
“P.J. Passalacqua did an unbelievable job today,” Head Coach Brian Getz said. “He was not even supposed to be playing for us this year at all.”
No. 1 doubles Purcell and Hechtman defeated Garg and Andreas Kulsar 8-5. Hechtman had to fill in for Krebs, who usually plays with Purcell.
No. 2 doubles Hoyes and Fuller beat Tarralle and Vazquez 9-7. Late in the set, the Eagles were closing in on the ‘Canes, but Hoyes and Fuller were able to hold on.
With this win under their belt, the Hurricanes are 12-7 on the season as they head to the Big East Championships next week at the Neil Schiff Tennis Center. This is the last Big East Tournament they will play in before they move to the ACC next season. The competition is fiercer in the ACC, but the team is looking forward to the challenge.
“It’s going to be a step up for everyone. The Big East is not that strong, relatively speaking, compared to the ACC,” Getz said. “It’s going to be tough.”
Getz said fan turnout would play a huge role in the Hurricanes’ tournament run.
“It depends on the fans,” Getz said. “If we get the crowd out then home court is home court, so that is an advantage.”
Whitney Brown can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.