In a weekend of multiple rain-delayed matches and a semifinal victory that ended at 3 a.m., the No. 4 FGCU men’s tennis team defeated No. 6 Lipscomb 4-2 to win the ASUN Championship.
Defeating No. 5 USC Upstate and No. 1 UNF en route to claiming their second ASUN Championship in the last three seasons, the Eagles victory on Sunday secured their spot in the NCAA Tournament.
“I knew today was going to be a really tough match,” said FGCU head coach CJ Webber. “I said that yesterday when they asked me about the matchup and Lipscomb got a very good team. I told the Lipscomb coach at the end that the ASUN had arrived because we’ve been talking about it getting this conference better for the last six years, and the conference is so good now.”
For the third-straight day, the Eagles earned a point in the doubles. The Eagles number two and three doubles team of Javier Fernandez and Mateo Ruiz and Ezequiel Cerrini and Andres Alfonzo won their sets 6-2 and 6-1 respectively.
The wins came before Ramirez and Oliver Landert finished, and that match was called as the Eagles picked up the points they needed.
Needing three wins in the six singles matches, the Eagles won the first three sets of three different matches quickly after Fernandez gave the Eagles a second point with a 6-1-6-0 win.
Ruiz was unable to win his match, getting the Bisons on the board, but Cerrini was able to pull out a 6-4, 6-0 win even though he was injured as he finished.
He needed medical attention at 5-0 but was able to win the next game to put FGCU up 3-1.
Landert’s match was the next to finish as he dropped a close two-set match to Victor Chaw 4-6, 5-7.
With two matches to go, the Eagles were ahead in both of them in the third set, and Ramirez claimed his victory before Alfonzo to secure the Eagles’ NCAA tournament berth and the ASUN title.
Following FGCU’s ASUN Championship victory, Fernandez, Ramirez and Alfonzo were named to the All-Tournament team while Alfonzo took home MVP honors.
“We went through so much this season, and I went through a lot this year,” Alfonzo said. “It looked like it was going to be impossible but you always have to believe you can keep doing it so it feels amazing because we did it.”
FGCU will now wait for the draw to be released to see where they will be headed in the NCAA Tournament.
1) Ramirez (FGCU) def. Mitchell (LU) 4-6, 6-2, 6-2
2) Manzanares (LU) def. Ruiz (FGCU) 6-1, 6-0
3) Chaw (LU) def. Landert (FGCU) 6-4, 7-5
4) Cerrini (FGCU) def. Cardenas (LU) 6-4, 6-0
5) Alfonzo (FGCU) vs. Ortegon (LU) 6-1, 5-7, 4-3 DNF
6) Fernandez (FGCU) def. Wong (LU) 6-1, 6-0
1) Landert/Ramirez (FGCU) vs. Manzanares/Chaw (LU) 4-2 DNF
2) Alfonzo/Cerrini (FGCU) def. Mitchell/Cardenas (LU) 6-1
3) Fernandez/Ruiz (FGCU) def. Wong/Ortegon (LU) 6-2