FREDERICKSBURG, Va. – The No. 14 Salisbury University men’s tennis team entered Friday’s neutral-site match against No. 23 Hampden-Sydney College with a 1-4 mark against nationally-ranked opponents. But the Sea Gulls improved upon that mark with a resounding 8-1 victory, handing the Tigers their first loss of the 2010 season.
Salisbury claimed a 3-0 lead by sweeping the doubles matches, battling to the final game in the top doubles match as seniors Scott Burtzlaff (Clarksville, Md.) and Evan Thomas (Salisbury, Md.), ranked No. 3 in the Atlantic South Region, earned the win 9-7. Junior Andrew Nottage (Huntingtown, Md.) and sophomore Daniel Barnas (La Plata, Md.) combined for an 8-4 win at No. 2 doubles and the team of David Lupinetti (Walkersville, Md.) and senior Marcus Robinson (Cambridge, Md.) rolled to an 8-1 win at No. 3 doubles to start the day.
Needing just two wins in singles to wrap up the victory, the Sea Gulls (11-4) got a big start from the lower end of the lineup as Nottage and junior Giorgio Athans (Woolwich Township, N.J.) at No. 4 and No. 5 singles, respectively, closed out the victory. Nottage claimed a 6-0, 6-3 victory and Athans finished off his match 6-3, 6-1.
Salisbury also earned singles wins from Burtzlaff (6-3, 6-4) at No. 1, Thomas (6-1, 6-3) at No. 2 and Robinson at No. 6 (6-2, 3-6, 10-4).
Salisbury will take on another nationally-ranked opponent in its next match as the Sea Gulls travel back to Fredericksburg on Wednesday for a match against Capital Athletic Conference foe University of Mary Washington. The winner of the match will have the inside track on the top seed in the upcoming CAC tournament.