Sea Gulls suffer narrow 5-4 defeat at hands of Methodist

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. -- The Salisbury University men's tennis team fell in a hard-fought match to Methodist University, 5-4, Sunday afternoon in a non-conference, neutral-site match, played on the courts of Virginia Wesleyan College.

The tightly-contested match saw the Sea Gulls (1-3) jump out to a 2-1 lead through the doubles matches with the No. 1 pair of sophomore Daniel Albers and freshman Eric Spangler defeating Taylor Buchholz and Duncan Miller, 8-4. Salisbury also picked up a win at No. 3 with sophomore Nick Mancuso and junior Shane Gunther taking down the pair of Lawrence Salmon and Dillon Sullivan, ranked No. 14 in the South Atlantic Region, by an 8-5 margin.

The Monarchs' lone doubles point came from Greg Patterson and Robert Clayton, who knocked off the Sea Gulls' No. 2 pair of Demetri Vrahnos and Adam Goldberger, 8-1.

At No. 1 singles, Albers continued his strong day defeating Miller in straight sets 7-5, 6-3 while Vrahnos picked up another point for the maroon and gold with a three-set victory over Patterson 6-4, 4-6, 6-4 at No. 3 singles. Vrahnos has won each of his first four singles matches this season.

The Monarchs (4-0), ranked No. 14 in the Atlantic South Region, found life at No. 2 as Buchholz handled Spangler in straight sets 6-2, 6-0 and Sullivan aided the Methodist cause at No. 5 singles with a 6-2, 6-1 win over Gunther.

The No. 4 slot produced the closest match of the day where Methodist's Teal Howard outlasted Goldberger in three sets, 6-4, 4-6, 7-5.

The deciding point for the Monarchs came when Lawrence Salmon defeated sophomore Matthew McGaffney 6-2, 6-2 at No. 6.

Sunday's match marked the second straight 5-4 loss for the Sea Gulls as they were defeated last Sunday by Bridgewater (Va.) College.

The Sea Gulls will look to rebound this Saturday, March 9, when they will make a return trip  to Virginia Beach to take on Virginia Wesleyan. The match is slated to begin at 11:00 a.m.

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