LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga. – The winning ways continue for the Georgia Gwinnett College men’s tennis team as the NAIA top-ranked Grizzlies registered an 8-1 home victory Thursday afternoon against NCAA Division II No. 5-ranked Lander University (S.C.) in the 2019 season opener at the GGC Tennis Facility.
GGC extended the nation’s longest active intercollegiate winning streak to 83 consecutive matches.
The hosts jumped to a 2-0 lead with identical 8-3 triumphs on the No. 1 and No. 3 doubles courts. Senior Ayed Zatar and sophomore Valentino Caratini won the last four games at the top of the doubles lineup.
They are the NAIA’s top-ranked duo after winning the doubles national title during the fall schedule of the 2018-19 season.
Sophomore Federico Bonacia and junior Gregor Hutterer gave the Grizzlies their second doubles point. Lander earned an 8-6 win at No. 2 doubles to get within 2-1 heading into the six singles matches.
That would be the only point the Bearcats would manage in the match as the Grizzlies were victorious on all six courts in straight sets.
Caratini capped off his strong day by winning all 12 games at No. 5 singles. Junior Mika Kosonen, the NAIA’s No. 2-ranked singles player, recorded a 6-0, 6-1 victory at
No. 6 singles. Classmate Federico Herrera Duran, the NAIA’s top-ranked singles player, clinched the victory, gaining the fifth team point with a win on the No. 1 court.
Sophomore Federico Bonacia and freshman Jose Dugo recorded their first singles dual-match wins Thursday, playing on the No. 2 and the No. 4 courts, respectively. Senior Rafael Coutinhowon by 6-4, 6-3 scores at No. 3 singles to round out the team’s strong singles play.
“Getting two doubles matches, to go up 2-1, always gets us off to a strong start. Then, sweeping all of the singles matches shows that we are very capable in singles. It was a very good result for our first time out this season,” said Head Coach Chase Hodges.
Georgia Gwinnett College hosts NCAA Division II USC Aiken and NAIA Union College (Ky.) on Feb. 15 during the first day of the Grizzly Invitational at the GGC Tennis Facility.
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GGCAthletics.com will be home for the latest news and information regarding the baseball season. Video broadcasts of all home games will be through the Grizzly Digital Network with Matt Mahony providing play-by-play commentary.