Wesleyan Netters Take Down No. 50 Chowan, 6-3

Wesleyan Netters Take Down No. 50 Chowan, 6-3

GREENSBORO, N.C. -- Nathan Sabate and Ferran Berga won twice Saturday as West Virginia Wesleyan snapped a four match losing streak with a 6-3 victory over regional foe Chowan.

The Bobcats (3-4) came in ranked No. 7 in the Atlantic region, while Chowan (6-6) carried a No. 50 national ITA ranking and was No.2 in the region.

The four match losing streak was the longest for the 'Cats under head coach Marc Walters since he took the helm in 2013. These two teams also split two very close matches last season, with Chowan taking the NCAA match up, 5-3.

"This was a key date for us and a result we almost had to have going into March," said Walters. "Our kids just stepped up despite fighting through their demons of the past few weeks. It's not that we have been playing that bad, but putting a complete match together has been eluding us. Today was pretty solid top to bottom for us and we looked like ourselves, especially in the big points."

Sabate and Berga paired up for a win at No. 2 doubles to give Wesleyan a 2-1 lead going into singles.

The first point was also a boost for the Bobcats as freshman tandem of Lukas Laipold and Pierre-Olivier Bedard upset Chowan's top pair of Farid Hajidza and Adi Kaliaperkov, 8-3.

"The freshmen set the tone for us today and that is really the same way they have competed all spring," noted Walters.

After straight set wins from Ramon Rodriguez and Alexander Lyudinovskiy (pictured) pushed the lead to 4-1, Sabate then clinched the match with a 6-3, 6-3 win over Hajidza, who came in ranked in the top ten of the region in singles. It was Sabate's first win over the Chowan senior in three tries.

Berga then closed the scoring with a three set win at No. 6 singles for the final margin.

"We had great weather and a schedule that helped us get the team ready for the match, but in the end the guys needed to reach down and find their will power to over come a good team today and get themselves going," said Walters. "It's a long way to go, but this is a good start heading into regional play."

 

Pictured: Alexander Lyudinovskiy serves during his 6-1 6-1 No. 5 singles win over Chowan's Mariano Yeh