14920944253_42d76287ff_k edit online

mens Tennis: Dons Close off title on senior day

Steffen Deetjen
Staff Writer

Last weekend the Dons men’s tennis team wrapped up their regular season with two home matches on Friday and Saturday. The players were excited to get the weekend started to finish the regular season strong. The Dons played host to Gonzaga on Friday at the Olympic Club and Portland on Saturday at the Cal Club.

Saturday’s Senior Day went smoothly for the Dons as seniors Johan Samuelsson, Bernardo Saraiva and James Tallman competed in their final home matches of their USF careers. The Dons stepped up at the Cal Club and swept Portland 4-0. With the win against Portland, the Dons finished their season on a high-note with a final record of 12-8 and 5-3 in WCC play. Starting with doubles play, the Dons started off hot with their No. 2 and 3 pairs. Junior Vasco Valverde and sophomore Thomas Takemoto dominated their match and left no room for error as they defeated their opponents Matthew and Pierre Garcia with a score of 6-1. Solid play from senior James Tallman and sophomore Christian Brockstedt notched the Dons second doubles victory. The winning–streak against Portland continued as the entire line-up proceeded to win all six singles matches. Tallman set the pace and wrapped up his match first winning his match against Michail Pervolarakis. With the Dons leading 3-0 against the Pilots, senior Bernardo Saravia played his last home game for USF and closed it out for the Dons in a clutch match 6-2, 7-6(3).

Friday’s matchup against the Bulldogs turned out be a victory for the Dons with an outstanding match score of 4-0. The Dons took a solid lead with the No.1 and No.3 doubles matches. The pair of Bernardo Saravia and junior Nils Skajaa downed Bulldogs Vladimir Mijatovic and Hayden Smith with a set score of 6-0. Duo Thomas Takemoto and Vasco Valverde closed out the doubles play for the Dons with another dominating win of 6-2 against Gonzaga’s No. 3 pair Joey Brandt and Sergio Chip. The Dons singles play followed suit of their doubles play sealing a dominant day on the court. Freshman Alex Santiago was the first player off the court after he crushed his opposition, Joey Brandt, by not even losing a single game 6-0 and 6-0. Tallman continued the Dons streak with his win against Hayden Smith. Although Tallman struggled a bit in the first set, 6-3, he came back and closed out his match in the second set 6-2. To solidify the win, Vasco Valverde won the final match against Sergio Chip in a back and forth battle 2-5, 7-5 and 6-1.

The Dons are looking ahead to the WCC Championship. Tournament play will start today, April 22nd and will run through Saturday in sunny San Diego.

Up next the Dons will head to Spokane, Washington to take on Gonzaga on April 17th.

Photo Credits: Dons Athletics

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