EDINBORO (Pa.) — The West Virginia Wesleyan mens tennis team let one get away from them against Edinboro Friday afternoon in non-conference action and wound up dropping a 4-3 decision.
It was the first regional loss for Wesleyan as they saw their overall record fall to 3-4.
Wesleyan came into the game ranked third in the Atlantic Region while Edinboro was fifth.
"We came up a bit short today and Edinboro got some clutch play when they had to have it to win the match," said head coach West Virginia Wesleyan head coach Marc Walters. "We learned a little bit about our team and the new guys got a taste of what they have been dishing out. Their guys played smarter early and they put themselves into a position to fight back. They deserve the credit for the result."
Down 2-1 after doubles, Wesleyan earned three straight wins to open singles play by Lukas Laipold, Maycon Dias and Alex Lyudinovskiy.
But the 'Cats failed to win a first set in the last three matches, enabling Edinboro to gain the momentum to get back into, and eventually turn the match in their favor.
The final 30 minutes of the match was played in tough conditions, with temps in the low 40s, 20 mph winds and a light drizzle that made footing precarious and shot selection tenuous.
The final match came down to Harry Simaioforidis and Nils Plutat, and the Bobcat sophomore led at one point 4-3 in the final set before dropping the last three games. Plutat saved multiple break points during the fifth and seventh games to keep the contest close.
“I thought both teams handled the weather really well, and I was very proud of the attitude for both teams," observed Walters. "Over four hours of play not one guy said anything about the conditions, and everything was ultra-competitive from start to finish. Edinboro barely uses their outdoor courts, so they had no real home court advantage. It was a very clean match."
Wesleyan was slated to play Sunday against Mercyhurst.
They will return to action Monday when they visit Bluefield (Va.) College at 2:30 p.m.