Men's Tennis Edged By South Alabama, 4-3

Lucas Dirube was part of UAB's No. 2 doubles team that won on Sunday.

April 13, 2014

MOBILE, Ala. ---- South Alabama rallied with four straight wins in singles to edge past UAB, 4-3, in men's tennis action Sunday afternoon.

The match was the final one of the regular season for the Blazers (12-8). UAB will travel to Tulsa, Okla. later this week to play in the Conference USA Championships.

UAB won the doubles point for the 15th time this season and then extended the margin to a 3-0 lead as seniors Chris Helliar and Rafael Rondino captured straight-set wins at the top two singles positions.

But the Jaguars, ranked No. 75 nationally in the latest ITA rankings, came back with wins at the bottom four spots. Both teams entered the match having won five of their last six matches.

UAB won at No. 2 and 3 doubles to gain a 1-0 advantage. Lucas Dirube and Donovan McSeveney downed Gerhard Gruindelingh and Daniel Leitner, 8-3, at the No. 2 position while Luiz Felipe Pinto and Rafael Rondino were 8-5 winners over Tuki Jacobs and Shayann Vaezzadeh at No. 3 doubles.

The Jags' No. 1 duo of Manuel Belda and Juan Troglia edged UAB's Chris Helliar and Mitchell Martell, 8-7, to avoid a doubles sweep by the Blazers.

Helliar bounced back in singles as he defeated Leitner at the No. 1 position, 6-4, 6-2. Rondino increased the UAB lead to 3-0 with his 7-5, 6-3 win at No. 2 over Belda.



Wins by Vaezzadeh at No. 5, Troglia at No. 6 and Gruindelingh at No. 4 evened the match at 3-3.

Vaezzadeh defeated Martell, 6-3, 6-3, at No. 5 singles with Troglia holding off Pinto by a 6-2, 7-6 (5) score at No. 6. Gruindelingh provided a win at No. 4 as he outlasted Stepan Vancurik in a close match, 6-4, 7-5.

That left the match at No. 3 to determine the winner. South Alabama's Jacobs won a tight first set, 7-6, over UAB's McSeveney, dropped the second by a 4-6 score to the first-year Blazer and then claimed the third and deciding set, 6-3.

For more information on the UAB men's tennis team, follow the Blazers on Twitter (@uab_mtennis). For more on all UAB sports teams follow UAB Athletics on Twitter (@UABAthletics).

No. 75 South Alabama 4, UAB 3

No. 1 - Manuel Belda/Juan Troglia (USA) def. Chris Helliar/Mitchell Martell (UAB) 8-7
No. 2 - Lucas Dirube/Donovan McSeveney (UAB) def. Gerhard Gruindelingh/Daniel Leitner (USA) 8-3
No. 3 - Luiz Felipe Pinto/Rafael Rondino (UAB) def. Tuki Jacobs/Shayann Vaezzadeh (USA) 8-5

No. 1 - #80 Chris Helliar (UAB) def. Daniel Leitner (USA) 6-4, 6-2
No. 2 - Rafael Rondino (UAB) def. Manuel Belda (USA) 7-5, 6-3
No. 3 - Tuki Jacobs (USA) def. Donovan McSeveney (UAB) 7-6 (6), 4-6, 6-3
No. 4 - Gerhard Gruindelingh (USA) def. Stepan Vancurik (UAB) 6-4, 7-5
No. 5 - Shayann Vaezzadeh (USA) def. Mitchell Martell (UAB) 6-3, 6-3
No. 6 - Juan Troglia (USA) def. Luiz Pinto (UAB) 6-2, 7-6 (5)

Records: South Alabama 17-7, UAB 12-8