USC Upstate Suffers 5-2 Setback at Chattanooga

USC Upstate Suffers 5-2 Setback at Chattanooga

Chattanooga, Tenn. – The USC Upstate men's tennis team dropped a 5-2 non-conference decision on the road Sunday afternoon to the Chattanooga Mocs from the UTC Tennis Center.

USC Upstate falls to 1-4 on the season while Chattanooga improves to 7-4 overall.

The Spartans won at No. 1 and No. 3 to capture the doubles point and take a 1-0 lead over the Mocs.

The No. 3 combination of Samuel Schiano and Francisco Neto got things started for USC Upstate topping Pablo Llebeili and Jacob Marshall 6-3. After Chattanooga won at No. 2, the No. 1 duo of Ankush Arora and Fernando Bernardes secured the point for the Spartans after defeating Kerim Hyatt and Simon Bustamante 6-4.

The Mocs won five singles matches to earn the 5-2 victory. USC Upstate would send two matches into the third set at No. 4 and No. 6.

Bernardes recorded his second straight singles victory with a three-set win over Hyatt. The junior took the first set in extras 7-6 (10-8) before Hyatt won the second 6-3. Bernardes answered in the third with a 6-3 win of his own to take the match.

Lucas Percy (No. 4) and Tom Russwurm (No. 6) both sent their respective singles matches into the third set. Percy fell 6-4, 2-6, 0-6 to Bustamante while Russwurm sent two of his sets into extra points. The sophomore suffered a 6-7 (6-8), 6-4, 0-1 (4-10) loss to Cooper Long.

"Considering we haven't really practiced since Monday, and Luka got sick this morning, I was very pleasantly surprised with the way we came out firing in doubles with teams we've never practiced with before. In singles I thought we competed hard even though we didn't play that well. Our biggest problem up and down the lineup is we keep digging ourselves holes and then we're always fighting from behind. We need to do a better job of taking advantage of opportunities and making sure we can be frontrunners on the scoreboard." – Tim McLane, head coach

The Spartans return to conference play next weekend, March 1-2, traveling to Radford and Campbell.

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