NASHVILLE --- The Tennessee State men's and women's tennis teams ended their six-match homestand at the Currey Tennis Center on a windy Monday afternoon with losses to Detroit Mercy. The Titans beat the men's team 7-0, while the women fought hard in singles before falling 4-3.
On the men's side, Big Blue battled through doubles on all courts. Jackson Gwinn and Larry Sloan played at No. 1, and lost 6-2 to undefeated senior-freshman duo in Nathan Ponton and Luka Soskic. Deroit Mercy clinched the doubles point on court two, 6-1, before Shashank Nautiyal and Tanishq Mahendru fell 6-2 at No. 3.
Without the doubles point, the Tigers had to dominate in singles to have a chance of victory. Pavle Popovic was the only Tiger to win a set at No. 6, pushing the match to a tiebreaker. The Titans' Adam Zychowicz came back in the third set, beating Popovic 3-6, 6-2, 10-4. With The Tiger men dropped to 9-6 overall
On the women's side, the Titans clinched the doubles point on courts one and two. On court three, Ani Popiashvili and Morgan Cage were tied 3-3 before moving on to singles, leaving the final doubles match unfinished.
In singles, Aarushi Kakkar, Abhilasha Vishwanath and Phoenix Gandy were the Tigers to earn TSU points with wins on courts three, four and six, respectively. Kakkar cruised past Luxembourg native Pauline Van Herck, 6-3, 6-1. Gandy won the first set but was down 1-4 in the second, before Detroit Mercy's Sara Mitrakovic retired due to injury. Vishwanath's resilience pushed her through the first set 6-4, before letting Ksenia Providokhina come back with the same score. In the tiebreaker, Vishwanath and Providokhina battled point for point, before TSU pulled ahead closing out the night winning the Tigers' second point, 10-7.
The women's team suffered its second loss of the season, dropping to 10-2 overall.
Both teams travel to Clarksville, Tenn. March 16 to begin conference play against Austin Peay.
TENNESSEE STATE MEN 0, Detroit Mercy 7
1. Nathan Ponton (UDM) def. GWINN, Jackson (TSUM) 6-0, 6-0
2. Luka Soskic (UDM) def. SLOAN, Larry (TSUM) 6-0, 6-2
3. Jenya Sirous (UDM) def. NAUTIYAL, Shashank (TSUM) 6-2, 7-5
4. Gvidas Motuzas (UDM) def. KORUGA, Stefan (TSUM) 6-2, 6-3
5. Alvaro Arce (UDM) def. MAHENDRU, Tanishq (TSUM) 6-0, 6-3
6. Adam Zychowicz (UDM) def. POPOVIC, Pavle (TSUM) 3-6, 6-2, 10-4
1. Nathan Ponton/Luka Soskic (UDM) def. GWINN, Jackson/SLOAN, Larry (TSUM) 6-2
2. Alvaro Arce/Jenya Sirous (UDM) def. KORUGA, Stefan/POPOVIC, Pavle (TSUM) 6-1
3. Gvidas Motuzas/Adam Zychowicz (UDM) def. MAHENDRU, Tanishq/NAUTIYAL, Shashank (TSUM) 6-3
TENNESSEE STATE WOMEN 3, Detroit Mercy 4
1. Iris Thioux (DETMERCY) def. POPIASHVILI, Ani (TSUW) 6-2, 6-1
2. Jasmine Apawti (DETMERCY) def. CAGE, Morgan (TSUW) 6-1, 6-1
3. KAKKAR, Aarushi (TSUW) def. Pauline Van Herck (DETMERCY) 6-3, 6-1
4. VISHWANATH, A (TSUW) def. Ksenia Providokhina (DETMERCY) 6-4, 4-6, 10-7
5. Chelsea Apawti (DETMERCY) def. JONES, Ashia (TSUW) 6-1, 6-4
6. GANDY, Phoenix (TSUW) def. Sara Mitrakovic (DETMERCY) 7-6, 1-4, retired
1. Chelsea Apawti/Jasmine Apawti (DETMERCY) def. GANDY, Phoenix/JONES, Ashia (TSUW) 6-0
2. Pauline Van Herck/Iris Thioux (DETMERCY) def. KAKKAR, Aarushi/VISHWANATH, A (TSUW) 6-0
3. CAGE, Morgan/POPIASHVILI, Ani (TSUW) vs. Sara Mitrakovic/Ksenia Providokhina (DETMERCY) 3-3, unfinished