"Elon is a program that you can use to judge how much you are improving," stated head coach Carlos Garcia. "To battle them in a close match after being swept in doubles shows that we are moving in the right direction."
The Mocs had won seven doubles points in a row, and eight of the last nine, coming into today's match. However, the Phoenix took the opening lead without much challenge. The closest match was at No. 1 where sophomores Roberto Vieira (Bedfordview, South Africa) and Chris Smith (Johnson City, Tenn.) lost to Phillip Nemec and Chase Helpingstine (8-5).
Chattanooga tried to bounce back in singles play, jumping out to an early lead in four of the six matches. However, it was Elon that extended its advantage to 3-0 in the team score with quick wins at No. 4 and No. 5.
The Mocs got on the board when sophomore Stephen Crofford (Franklin, Tenn.) won his second-straight at No. 6. He was down 5-2 in the second set before storming back to clinch the (6-2, 7-5) win.
Chattanooga needed to sweep the three remaining tightly contested matches to post a come-back win. Vieira and Smith were both in three-set battles at No. 1 and No. 2, respectively. Sophomore Jackson Tresnan (Apopka, Fla.) lost his first set 7-5 to Eric Turner. He fell behind 3-0 in his second set and tried to claw his was back in the match, but eventually lost 6-3 to give Elon the team win.
"I was proud of the way our guys battled today," continued Garcia. "For us to play this well against a team like that is definitely a good sign for things to come."
Vieira had already started his third set with Nemec when the match was decided, so they played a full slate. Vieira took the opening set 6-2, before Nemec responded with a 6-4 win in the second. Vieira closed out the match with a 6-4 win in the third for his 10th singles victory of the year. He also improved to 6-4 at No.1 for the Mocs.
Smith won his first set (7-6 (4)) over Cameron Silverman, but lost the second 6-4. Their second set finished after the team score was decided, so they played a 10-point super-tiebreaker to decide the outcome. Smith won the final frame 10-6 to improve to 8-6 in dual matches this spring.
The Mocs wrap-up their seven-match homestand next weekend, hosting Stetson and Appalachian State. Chattanooga welcomes the Hatters on Friday, March 25, at 2:00 p.m. while the Mountaineers visit on Sunday, March 27, at 1:00 p.m. Both contests will be played on the UTC Tennis Courts. Live scoring will be available for both matches on GoMocs.com.
Elon 4, Chattanooga 3
Mar 20, 2011 at Chattanooga, Tenn. (UTC Tennis Courts)
1. Phillip Nemec-Chase Helpingstine (ELON) def. Chris Smith-Roberto Vieira (UTC) - 8-5
2. Alberto Rojas-Cody S-MacDowell (ELON) def. William Disterdick-Rick van de Bovenkamp (UTC) - 8-4
3. Cameron Silverman-Eric Turner (ELON) def. Stephen Crofford-Jackson Tresnan (UTC) - 8-4
1. Roberto Vieira (UTC) def. Phillip Nemec (ELON) - 6-2, 4-6, 6-4
2. Chris Smith (UTC) def. Cameron Silverman (ELON) - 7-6 (7-4), 4-6, 1-0 (10-6)
3. Eric Turner (ELON) def. Jackson Tresnan (UTC) - 7-5, 6-3
4. Chase Helpingstine (ELON) def. Matt Harris (UTC) - 6-2, 6-0
5. Alberto Rojas (ELON) def. Rick van de Bovenkamp (UTC) - 6-1, 6-0
6. Stephen Crofford (UTC) def. Phillip Meyer (ELON) - 6-2, 7-5