GW Men's Tennis Opens Outdoor Action in North Carolina This Weekend
Colonials to Face Two Consecutive Top 70 Opponents During Road Swing
Feb. 27, 2014
WASHINGTON – George Washington men’s tennis heads to North Carolina this weekend for three matches in as many days, including two against nationally ranked opponents, in the midst of 12 consecutive matches away from home. The Colonials first travel to face No. 70 Charlotte on Friday before taking on No. 60 UNC Wilmington on Saturday and wrapping the weekend at East Carolina on Sunday.
GW (2-4) opened the season with six consecutive indoor matches and will get its first taste of outdoor play this weekend. The Colonials are coming off a 5-2 win at Old Dominion on Sunday in which they handed the Monarchs their first loss against an unranked team this spring.
After going undefeated at No. 2 doubles and No. 3 singles against ODU, senior Nikita Fomin earned a share of the Atlantic 10 Performer of the Week award for the second time in his career. The Buff and Blue are led on the season by rookie Julius Tverijonas, who owns an overall dual-match record of 3-2, and junior Francisco Dias, who owns a 2-2 mark and is ranked the No. 115 singles player by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA). Dias and Tverijonas are 4-2 as the Colonials’ No. 1 pair this spring.
GW first heads to former Atlantic 10 foe No. 70 Charlotte for a 12 p.m. match on Friday afternoon at the Halton-Wagner Tennis Complex. The 49ers (5-2) snapped a five-match winning streak on Wednesday with a 4-3 loss at Winthrop, having previously only fallen to then-No. 19 Wake Forest in their season opener on Jan. 11. Forrest Edward leads Charlotte on the season with a 5-1 dual-match record at the No. 1 singles spot and is 18-4 overall, while Paul Cisti and Jordi Massalle Ferrer are both 5-2 this spring. The 49ers’ No. 2 pair of Massalle Ferrer and Kamil Khalil are undefeated at 7-0 and own an ITA doubles ranking of No. 31. GW defeated Charlotte twice last season – 5-1 on the road on April 12 and 4-0 in the semifinals of the A-10 Championship on April 27.
The Colonials next travel to No. 60 UNC Wilmington on Saturday for a 12 p.m. match at the UNCW Courts. The Seahawks (5-3) are on a four-match winning streak after sweeping Elon, 7-0, on Monday. UNCW’s only losses this season have come at the hands of top-65 opponents in No. 63 East Tennessee State, No. 24 Clemson, No. 35 Florida State and No. 14 Florida. Kaue Pereira is undefeated in No. 5 singles with a 4-0 record this spring, and Santtu Leskinen and Sam Williams both own dual-match records of 5-1. Additionally, Rafael Aita, the No. 87 singles player in the nation, is 4-1 at the No. 1 spot, while he and Williams are ranked the No. 28 doubles duo with a 2-0 mark.
GW wraps its three-match weekend swing in Greenville, N.C., against East Carolina at 12 p.m. at the River Birch Tennis Center. ECU (10-3) snapped a two-match skid when it defeated the USTA Roadrunners, 4-3, last Friday. The Pirates are paced on the season by Blake Gregory with a 5-1 dual-match record and Fredric Lehfeldt at 9-3. No. 20 Joran Vliegen owns an overall mark of 23-5 and an 8-2 record this spring, and he is 6-2 in No. 1 doubles with partner Colin Roller. The Colonials defeated the Pirates, 4-3, one season ago in their second match of the year.