ATLANTA--The No. 60-ranked Georgia State men's tennis team knocked off Nicholls State 5-2 after it clinched the doubles point for the seventh-consecutive time this season.
Georgia State improved to 6-1 this season thanks to a match-clinching victory at No. 3 singles from senior Lucas Santa Ana. The senior downed Nicholls State's Nico Mertens 7-5, 3-6, to claim his fifth singles victory of the season and lead the Panthers to the victory over Nicholls State (5-4).
Georgia State got off to a fast start as it won two of three doubles matches. Santa Ana paired with senior Victor Valente to win an 8-3 match at the No. 1 position. Junior Robert Schulze and sophomore Sofiane Chevallier won 8-2 at the No. 2 position to claim the doubles point for Georgia State. GSU is seven-for-seven in earning doubles points this season.
"We were glad to see that they bounced back from yesterday," assistant coach Cesar Vargas said, "We talked to them about not taking teams for granted and I think that was an eye opener for them. We especially played well in doubles today."
In singles play, Schulze put GSU on the board with a quick 6-2, 6-0 win at No. 5 singles vs. Manel Estruega. Schulze capped a 2-0 weekend with the singles victory. Valente, ranked No. 54 in the ITA National Singles rankings, followed with a 6-3, 6-2 win at No. 1 singles. It was a fourth-consecutive win for Valente in singles play as he improved to 5-1 this season.
Santa Ana locked up the match with his clinching victory at No. 3 singles. Freshman Paul Schuette notched a 7-5, 7-6 (7-4) win at the No. 6 singles position to finish off the day.
"We were more composed today and I thought we competed well in singles," Vargas said, "We had a couple of things here and there that we could've done a little better but overall I am pleased. I am glad there has been some progression with the guys."
Sunday's match was the first-ever contest between Georgia State and Nicholls State. GSU, led by first-year head coach Joerg Barthel, next travels to Johnson City, Tenn., for two matches at No. 74-ranked ETSU and against Nebraska. Visit the men's tennis page on GeorgiaStateSports.com for a preview of the match.
#60 Georgia State 5,
1. #54 Victor Valente (GSU) def. Dmitry Kozionov (NICM) 6-3, 6-2
2. Damian Despotovski (NICM) def. Thomas Cook (GSU) 6-4, 6-3
3. Lucas Santa Ana (GSU) def. Nico Mertens (NICM) 7-5, 6-3
4. Roy Knight (NICM) def. Andrew Zedde (GSU) 3-6, 7-6, 6-3
5. Robert Schulze (GSU) def. Manel Estruega (NICM) 6-2, 6-0
6. Paul Schuette (GSU) def. Jeoffrey Noblecourt (NICM) 7-5, 7-6 (7-4)
1. Victor Valente/Lucas Santa Ana (GSU) def. Damian Despotovski/Sidharth Sivakumar (NICM) 8-3
2. Sofiane Chevallier/Robert Schulze (GSU) def. Dmitry Kozionov/Nico Mertens (NICM) 8-2
3. Evan Karatzas/Roy Knight (NICM) def. Thomas Cook/Paul Schuette (GSU) 8-3