Tide Tennis Success In Fall Tournament

The Alabama men's tennis team picked up 20 wins on Saturday at the Crimson Tide Fall Championships, which is being held at the University of Alabama Tennis Stadium. Following day two of the three-day tournament, the Tide is still alive in seven main draws, including four in doubles and three in singles.

"We had a lot of success today and were able to get in a lot of matches for the eight guys competing," said Alabama Coach Billy Pate. "I was especially pleased with our progress in doubles and the fact we have all four of our doubles pairs still alive. The guys have a good chance to finish strong on Sunday."

In doubles, Alabama swept all eight of the matches it appeared in. Sophomores Daniil Proskura and Carlos Taborga posted a pair of 8-2 wins, first against the Boston College pair of Klaus Puestow and Alex Skinner, followed by Samford's Elliot Barwell and Ryan Shidler. Junior Jarryd Botha and freshman Rens van der Vis topped Samford's Zac Dunkle and Alex Sajonz 8-5 in their first match of the day and followed that up with an 8-1 decision over Virginia Tech's Mauricio Antun and Tripmir Kujundic. Seniors Vikram Reddy and Michael Thompson had a solid day in doubles, first with an 8-4 win over Middle Tennessee State's Forrest Edwards and Dmitri Pippos, followed by an 8-1 victory over Ball State's Alex Doherty and Patrick Elliott. Additionally, junior Harris Barnard and freshman Stuart Kenyon topped Samford's Jon Hunsicker and Garrison Laduca, 8-6, before posting an 8-1 decision over Boston College's Rob Ankner and Joe Davidson to close out a long day of play on Saturday.

In singles, Proskura, Taborga and Thompson will all represent Alabama in their respective singles main draw finals, while Reddy and van der Vis will play for their singles consolation finals. Proskura cruised through the day, tallying wins over Ball State's Ray Leonard and South Alabama's Alex Bernard with scores of 6-3, 6-4 and 6-0, 6-1, respectively, while Taborga advanced to his draw finals with a 6-2, 6-0 win over Chattanooga's Pasha Grigorjevs and a 6-2, 6-3 victory against Tulane's Shaye Wali. Thompson also won his two matches in straight sets with a 6-1, 6-3 win over Wake Forest's Amogh Prabhakar followed by a 7-5, 6-2 victory against Southern Mississippi's Jovan Zelikovic. Reddy posted a 6-2, 6-2 win against the Golden Eagles' Paulo Alvarado before grinding out a three-setter to beat Furman's Andrew Mello, 3-6, 6-2, 10-6. Van der Vis' first singles win of the day came by a score of 6-2, 6-2 over Samford's Garrison Laduca, while his second was in come-from-behind fashion as he topped Middle Tennessee State's Dmitri Pippos, 4-6, 7-5, 10-6.

Also competing in singles was Botha, Kenyon and Barnard. Botha came up just shy in his second round match losing a close 7-5, 7-6(4) match to Wake Forest's Danny Kreyman. Kenyon won his first match of the day, 6-4, 6-4, over Ball State's Austin Sansone, but fell in his second match to South Alabama's Cody Hall by a score of 7-5, 6-7(5), 6-0. Barnard also won his first match and lost in his second, posting a 6-3, 6-1 win over Middle Tennessee State's Marlon Brand before being edged by Southern Mississippi's Mike Elortegui, 6-3, 7-6(5).

Matches will resume on Sunday at 9 a.m. with doubles semifinals and singles finals of those not playing in doubles.

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