SAVANNAH, Ga. - The No. 7 Armstrong State University men's tennis team punched its ticket to the NCAA Division II Round of 16 with a 5-3 win over No. 8 Lander on Sunday afternoon at the Armstrong Tennis Complex.
The Pirates (20-7), who have advanced to the NCAA Semifinals or further each of the last five seasons, will face top-ranked West Florida in a first-round matchup at 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday, May 9th, at Sanlando Park in Altamonte Springs, Fla. Lander sees its season come to a close with a 17-7 record.
Armstrong State used brilliant doubles play to take an unassailable 3-0 lead. The No. 19-ranked doubles duo of seniors Luca Cerin and Ignacio Hernandez defeated Omar-El Moslemany and Marc Hofer, 8-3, at No. 1 doubles, while freshman Alvaro Cruz Chomorro and junior Jan Porteset defeated Eirik Groner and Ozan Cildir, 8-3, at No. 3 doubles. Freshmen Bjorn Kurtze and Lorenzo Camilli then outlasted David Korsten and Jules Vauthier, 9-8 (3), at No. 3 doubles to complete the doubles sweep.
In singles play, Lander got a pair of straight-set singles wins to pick up a pair of points. Korsten defeated Hernandez, 6-2, 6-3, at No. 2 singles, while Cildir downed Cruz Chomorro, 6-3, 6-3, at No. 5 singles. Jan Porteset's 3-6, 6-2, 6-3 win over Hofer at No. 3 singles made the team score 4-2, but Lander's El-Moslemany outlasted Kurtze, 6-1, 3-6, 6-4, to make the score 4-3 .
No. 38-ranked Cerin then clinched the match and the berth into the NCAA Round of 16 with his 7-5, 6-2 win over No. 42-ranked Groner at No. 1 singles.
This is the 13th straight trip to the NCAA Round of 16 for the Armstrong State men's tennis program. The Pirates have captured NCAA DII National Championships three times (2008, 2009, 2012) and have advanced to the semifinals 11 times in program history.