By Travis Rae, Communications and Sports Information Intern
MOBILE, Ala. – (Scores) (Bracket) The semifinals are set for the NAIA Men’s Tennis National Championship in Mobile, Ala., at the Mobile Tennis Center. Only four teams remain after three days of action with the top four seeds advancing to the semifinals. Semifinals action starts at 9 a.m. tomorrow.
Top-seeded Embry-Riddle (Fla.) advanced to the semifinals after defeating fourth-seed Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) on Thursday morning. Embry-Riddle’s Deni Zmak and Chris Freeman, No. 1 doubles, downed the team of Fernando Bogajo and Francisco Charters, 8-4. The Eagles also took No. 3 doubles to take a 2-1 lead after doubles. Embry-Riddle did not let Lindsey Wilson get anything going in singles as the Eagles won No. 3 singles, 6-4, 6-1, No. 5 singles, 6-0, 6-0, and No. 6 singles, 6-0, 6-1, to clinch the match, 5-1. The Eagles have advanced to the semifinals in every national championship since 2005 and will face Westmont (Calif.) in the semifinals tomorrow.
Westmont, who is the fourth-seed, punched its ticket to the semifinals by downing Aquinas (Mich.), 5-1 in the quarterfinals. Westmont took two-of-three doubles, including at the No. 1 and No 2 positions, to take the advantage going into singles. Westmont did not let Aquinas get any closer as they won Nos. 2-4 singles to clinch the match. The Warriors advance to face top-seeded Embry-Riddle in the semifinals tomorrow.
Third-seeded Vanguard (Calif.) advanced to the semifinals after defeating sixth-seed Xavier (La.), 5-2, on Thursday. Vanguard, who is the only undefeated team in the nation at 24-0, dropped both doubles set to Xavier, 8-5. Vanguard bounced back in singles action and claimed four singles wins. Rogers Muri clinched the win for the Lions with a 6-2, 6-4, victory over Nikita Soifer in No. 2 singles. Vanguard will face second-seed Auburn Montgomery (Ala.) in the semifinals.
Second-seed Auburn Montgomery is advancing to its first semifinals since 2011 after defeating Cumberland (Tenn.), 5-2. The Warhawks took two points in doubles by winning at No. 1 and No. 3. Auburn Montgomery continued to dominate in singles as Nicolas Pinones-Haltenhoff won in No. 1 singles, 6-4, 6-1. The Warhawks also won in No. 2 and 4 singles to clinch the victory and advance to the semifinals, where they will face third-seed Vanguard.
NeuLion, the NAIA’s official video-streaming company of 18 select NAIA national championship events, will be broadcasting the championship match on May 18. Streaming of the championship match will be free. For more information and to pre-register, click here.