#13 Men’s Netters Edge #16 Cougars, 5-4

by Tyler Peck, sports information graduate assistant

MILLEDGEVILLE, Ga. - The  No. 13 Georgia College & State University men's tennis team edged Peach Belt Conference (PBC) opponent No. 16 Columbus State University (3-1, 1-1 PBC) today (Feb. 15) 5-4. The Bobcats move to 3-1 overall with a 2-0 PBC mark.

The Bobcats sealed the victory in the sixth slot match, when Joao Casagrande (Sao Paulo, Brazil) defeated Luis Gonzalez 4-6, 6-3, 7-5.

The only doubles team to win for the Bobcats today (Feb. 15) was Erick Siqueira (Sao Paulo, Brazil) and Justin Pickham (Armidale, Australia) No. 2 doubles in country, who defeated the No. 16 pair of Frank Suarez and Gonzalez 8-3 in the number one doubles slot.

The number two doubles match pitted the No. 24 twosome of Casagrande and Francis Yoshimoto (Sao Paulo, Brazil) going against Dimitri Caron and Paul van Rensburg of Columbus State University. The Cougars were too much for the Bobcats and won the match 8-4.

In a very exciting dual match, Max Beliankou (Minsk, Belarus) and Giovane Nucci (Santa Catarina, Brazil) battled Diego Motivar and Nemanja Djuric to a tie and to settle things with a tie breaker. In a grueling match the team from Columbus State came away victorious 9-8.

In singles action, the No. 8 netter in the nation, Siqueira defeated Caron in straight sets 6-1, 6-1.

Pickham was able to pick apart the No. 23 player in the country, Suarez, 6-2, 6-7, 6-3. Georgia College's Yoshimoto, No. 24, defeated Djuric 6-4, 6-0.

Nucci lost to Rensburg 4-6, 7-6, 2-6 at the number five singles spot.

At fourth singles, Beliankou was unable to overcome cramps and a slight injury. He fought hard and ended short losing 6-4, 4-6, 2-6 to Motivar, setting up Casagrande with the team win on the line. The big 6-foot-4 junior had the team on his shoulders in a similar situation last season, a 5-4 win over USC Aiken.

The Bobcats are back in action Wednesday, Feb. 18 when Newberry College rolls into town with matches starting at 2 p.m.

Visit www.GCSUBobcats.com to nominate your favorite former Bobcats and Colonials to the GCSU Athletics Hall of Fame. The GCSU Department of Athletics sponsors 10 varsity athletic programs at the NCAA Division II level. As a Division II program, GCSU prides itself on balancing the life of the student-athlete, evidenced by the Bobcats' multiple appearances in post-season competition as well as documented academic success and community-service involvement.