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Men’s Tennis

Irish come up short against NC State, Georgia Tech; beat IUPUI

| Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Notre Dame competed in three matches this past weekend at their home court, Courtney Tennis Center, finishing 1-2 after two close 4-3 losses against ACC foes North Carolina State and No. 15 Georgia Tech and a 7-0 victory against IUPUI.

Irish head coach Ryan Sachire said it was a tough weekend, but saw some positives from his team’s performance.

“We lost two close 4-3 matches,” Sachire said. “They were matches we had the chance to win if a couple other points went our way, but it is what it is. There were certainly some bright spots and some guys played well, but it wasn’t enough to get the team a victory, which is what we want the most.”

Against North Carolina State on Friday, freshman Guillermo Cabrera won his singles match in straight sets 6-4, 6-1, and freshman Matt Gamble won his match in three sets,7-5, 2-6, 6-4. Those would be the only two singles wins for the Irish, however, as sophomore Grayson Broadus, senior Eddy Covalschi, senior Josh Hagar and sophomore Alex Lebedev lost close matches.

Irish freshman Matt Gamble starts his serve during Notre Dame’s 7-0 win over Boston College on Feb. 11 at Eck Tennis Center.Ann Curtis | The Observer

Irish freshman Matt Gamble starts his serve during Notre Dame’s 7-0 win over Boston College on Feb. 11 at Eck Tennis Center.

In the doubles competition, the No. 2 pair of Gamble/Lebedev won their match 6-2, while the No. 3 team of junior Brendon Kempin/Broadus emerged victorious 6-4.

Against Georgia Tech on Sunday, the singles matches unfolded similar to the North Carolina State match, with Cabrera and Gamble recording the only Irish wins in the singles competition.

Sachire said among the positives were the play of two freshman on the team.

“The positives coming out of the weekend were certainly our two freshman, Matt Gamble and Guillermo Cabrera,” Sachire said. “They both won both of their matches over the weekend and both played well over the weekend, and both of them did well while moving up in the lineup. They played in a higher spot in the lineup and still won both of their matches, and that’s tremendous. Both of those guys have done a good job and improved dramatically and so they continue to be guys we are very proud of for their performances.”

In doubles play, the No. 1 pair of Hagar/Covalschi won their match 6-4, while the No. 3 pair of Kempin/Broadus came out on top 6-3, but the Irish once again dropped the match 4-3.

Against IUPUI in the second match of the day, the Irish cruised to a 7-0 win. Notre Dame won every match, as junior Drew Dawson, sophomore Daniel Rayl, freshman Conor Somers, Broadus, Kempin and Lebedev recorded singles wins, and the No. 2 and No. 3 doubles teams of Somers/Covalschi and sophomore Nathan Griffin/Dawson both won by a 6-0 score.

Sachire was also proud of the play of Notre Dame’s top doubles pair of Hagar and Covalschi, who are ranked 11th in the nation.

“It was a really good step in the right direction for Josh and Eddy in doubles, especially yesterday,” he said. “They’ve been highly ranked as a doubles team the entire year, but I don’t think they’ve played the best tennis they can play over the past month or so, and yesterday was a really good and impactful win for them, so I’m excited for them getting back on the right track and hopefully they can build on that performance this week.”

The Irish next play this coming Friday down in Tallahassee, Florida, in an ACC match against Florida State.

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