April 15, 2012

Bishops Capture USA South Tourney Championship

Burlington, N.C. - For the fourth straight season, the North Carolina Wesleyan men's tennis team has captured the USA South Tournament Championship! The top-seeded Battling Bishops did so with a 7-2 victory over 2nd-seeded Christopher Newport on Sunday in Burlington.

The Bishops took a 2-1 lead in doubles play as the tandems of Robert Kjellberg/Alexey Rumyantsev and Marcelo Prata/Fred Lemongo won by 8-4 and 9-7 scores, respectively. The Captains' lone point came at the #2 seed, where they posted a 9-8 victory over the Bishop duo of Rinat Khussainov/Peter Hviid.

In singles action, Artsiom Prostak and Viktor Selander pulled the Bishops to within one point of the title with dominating straight-set victories at #6 and #4, while 3rd-seeded Alexey Rumyantsev's 7-5, 6-0 win over CNU's Matt King was the clincher.

Lemongo made it 6-1 in favor of Wesleyan with yet another straight setter at #5 before the Captains' Eric Shulman tallied a second point for his team with a 10-5 win in the third set over Khussainov. NCWC's Kjellberg finished out the 7-2 final with a win at the #2 seed.

Wesleyan had advanced to the championship with a 9-0 sweep of 9th-seeded Methodist in the semifinals.

For their efforts, Khussainov, Kjellberg, Lemongo and Rumyantsev were named to the All-Tournament team. CNU's Shulman, who was undefeated in the tournament, earned Most Valuable Player honors.

By virtue of their championship win, the Bishops claim the USA South's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament, which begins in May. Please continue to check www.ncwcsports.com for updates on dates, locations and opponents.