SALISBURY, Md. - The Salisbury University men's and women's tennis teams swept Eastern Shore rival Washington (Md.) College on a picturesque Friday afternoon at the SU Outdoor Tennis Courts. The Sea Gull women's team, ranked No. 10 in the Atlantic South region, crushed Washington, ranked 11th in the region, by five points, 7-2. SU's men's team doubled up the Shoremen 6-3.
The SU women's team (13-4) took a 3-0 lead into singles play as the Sea Gulls swept doubles. First to finish was the duo of juniors Rachel Iosue and Kelly Fahrner, who won easily 8-1, at No. 2 doubles over Gabie Batista and Carrie Palmer. The Sea Gulls scored five straight points over the Shorewomen (13-4) to start off and did not let up. The win puts Iosue and Fahrner at 9-4 overall this year. Senior Anna Marie Kable and junior Jackie Burr pulled out an 8-5 win over Washington's Jordan Finnegan and Brittany Marshall. The SU pair rallied back after they found themselves down 3-4. Burr and Kable secured the win with four straight points. Senior Robyn Wendell and sophomore Angela Tenaglia came back to tie their opponents Mary Kelley and Kate Barston as they were down 2-5 early on. The Sea Gull pair was able to put things together late in the match as they scored three consecutive game points and notched the 9-7 victory.
The first three singles matches to finish came from No. 1, No. 3 and No. 5 and gave SU a 5-1 lead as the maroon and gold just needed one more point to clinch the match. Burr defeated her counterpart Marshall 6-3, 6-1 as Burr recorded her 10th win of the season. Fahrner breezed past Barston at third singles with a 6-0, 6-1 win to clinch the match for Salisbury. The win gave Fahrner her eighth singles win of the season. Washington got on the board as Kelley defeated Wendell 6-1, 6-2 at fifth singles. At No. 6 singles, Salisbury's Tenaglia beat Batista 6-3, 6-2. Kable was able to record a win over Washington's Palmer at fourth singles. The Sea Gull found herself down early in the first set, 1-2, but rallied to take the set 6-3. Kable would go on to win the second set and the match 6-3, 6-2. The final match of the day was at No. 2 singles that featured SU's Iosue against Finnegan. Iosue won the first set 6-4 but Finnegan responded with her own 6-4 set win. The pair went into the third set tie-breaker that Finnegan won 10-6.
Salisbury's men's team (12-6) followed the Sea Gull women's lead as the maroon and gold swept doubles to jump out to a quick 3-0 lead over the Shoremen (9-6). At No. 2 doubles, SU sophomore Andrew Nottage and freshman Daniel Barnas started off up 4-1 and never relinquished the lead. The pair made good use of Nottage's powerful overheads to secure the 8-3 victory. Salisbury's No. 3 doubles team of junior Marcus Robinson and sophomore David Lupinetti took control against WC's Brian Danver and Todd Green early on. SU led 4-1 and cruised to the 8-3 win behind Lupinetti's solid ground strokes. To round out the doubles sweep, the No. 1 doubles team of juniors Scott Burtzlaff and Evan Thomas conducted a superb comeback win over Washington's Aaron Ellison and Brian Cedrowski. The duo was down 0-3 and rallied to 3-4. The tying point came when Burtzlaff hit an overhead slam which cleared the fence and land out on College Avenue. Soon afterwards, Thomas' relentless serving secured the lead and the eventually 8-5 win for the Sea Gulls.
SU took the first three singles' points to clinch the victory against the Shoremen. Thomas put together a solid win against Ellison at second singles. Thomas pushed ahead 4-3 in the first set and never looked back as he recorded the 6-4, 6-0 win. The match-winner was turned in by Lupinetti who notched a win against Cedrowski at third singles. The 6-2, 6-2 victory marks Lupinetti's 15th win of the season. Nottage performed well at No. 5 singles as he won a third set tie-breaker to slip by Green. The 6-2, 4-6, 11-9 win puts Nottage at 13-4 on the season. At sixth singles, SU senior Sasha Felikson fell just short of his counterpart Danver. After the two split sets, Danver was able to sweep the third set tie-breaker 3-6, 6-2, 10-0. At fourth singles, Barnas split sets with Green. After some close calls were disputed, line judges were called to aid the players. During the tie-breaker Barnas received a point penalty, which gave Green the 6-4, 2-6, 9-5 win. Burtzlaff was unable to get things moving against Shoreman Adam Cranford at No. 1 singles. Burtzlaff dropped the first set 3-6 but kept pace with Cranford to the final point as he lost the match 3-6, 5-7.
The Sea Gulls will turn their attention to next week's Capital Athletic Conference tournament. Salisbury's teams clinched the second-seed in the conference tournament and receive first round byes. The men's team will host a CAC semifinal match on Monday, April 20, while the women host a semifinal match the following day. Times and teams have not been determined.