FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — In their final home match of the season, the Northern Arizona Men's Tennis team garnered their second 7-0 sweep this weekend over the Eastern Washington Eagles. The Lumberjacks have remained undefeated at home all season winning seven total home matches. With just two matches left, the 'Jacks have clinched a spot in the Big Sky conference tournament and remain in first place increasing to 8-1 in conference.
"The men really stepped it up," Director of Tennis Ki Kroll said. "We talked about who wanted it today and I'm proud they gave it their all."
Going into the match both teams were determined to come out victorious, the first place spot was on the line with Eastern Washington close behind Northern Arizona. The Lumberjacks came out strong with doubles pair Tim Handel and Ruben Montano continuing their undefeated streak over EWU's Robert Dula and Victor Pereira. The two have garnered an impressive 10-0 doubles run so far this season and going 7-0 in conference. Lucas Taylor and Thomas Fisher followed shortly after winning 6-3 on their court to clinch the doubles point for the 'Jacks.
Northern Arizona dominated the Eagles dropping only one set. The Lumberjacks' Felix Schumann and David Nguyen increased their lead to 3-0 before Montano clinched the match. Montano won 6-4, 6-1 over EWU's Wacil Bendjelti to pick up his fourth match-clinching victory this season. With continued wins from Taylor, Sebastian Eguez and Handel, the Lumberjacks swept Eastern Washington 7-0.
Northern Arizona defended their first place spot in conference, remained undefeated at home all season, picked up two 7-0 sweeps on their own courts and are heading to the conference tournament. With one weekend in between them and the tournament, the Lumberjacks have their eyes on postseason.
"We are excited to clinch a spot in the tournament," said Kroll. "But the season isn't over yet."
Before then, the 'Jacks have a full week of practice before heading to North Dakota and Northern Colorado where they will finish the regular season on the road. The Lumberjacks will first head to North Dakota Friday, April 14 at noon and then will compete against Northern Colorado Sunday, April 16 at 10 a.m.
- Tim Handel/Ruben Montano (NAU) def. Robert Dula/Victor Pereira (EWU) 6-3
- Sebastian Eguez/Felix Schumann (NAU) vs. Scott Paz/Flavien Raveau (EWU) DNF
- Lucas Taylor/Thomas Fisher (NAU) def. Wacil Bendjelti/Ricardo Almeida (EWU) 6-3
Order of Finish: 1, 3, 2
- Tim Handel (NAU) def. Robert Dula (EWU) 6-2, 6-7(1), 10-5
- Lucas Taylor (NAU) def. Victor Pereira (EWU) 7-5, 6-4
- Sebastian Eguez (NAU) def. Scott Paz (EWU) 7-6, 6-3
- Felix Schumann (NAU) def. Flavien Raveau (EWU) 7-5, 6-4
- Ruben Montano (NAU) def. Wacil Bendjelti (EWU) 6-4, 6-1
- David Nguyen (NAU) def. Ricardo Almeida (EWU) 6-1, 6-4
Order of Finish: 4, 6, 5*, 2, 3, 1