UD Falls Short in Heartbreaker to Drexel in CAA Quarterfinals; Lawton Finishes Season with School-Record 27 Wins
WILLIAMSBURG, Va. – In a match that included four three-set matches, the University of Delaware men’s tennis team fell just short Friday evening with a heartbreaking 4-3 loss to Drexel University in the quarterfinals of the Colonial Athletic Association Championships at the Mille West Tennis Facility on the campus of William & Mary.
The fourth-seeded Dragons picked up the doubles point at the top two positions before the fifth-seeded Blue Hens got off to a fast start in singles play.
In No. 4 singles, Nolan Gelman evened the match at 1-1 with a 6-2, 6-2 triumph over Dan Koehler before UD moved ahead with a 6-2, 6-2 win by Adam Lawton over Jeganathan Sri in the No. 2 flight.
With the win, Lawton improved his season record to 17-3 in the No. 2 slot and 27-6 overall. The 27 victories are the most by any Delaware men’s tennis player. Current UD assistant Austin Longacre previously held the school record with 22-11 record during the 2007-08 campaign. Additionally, Lawton finishes his junior season with an outstanding 44-12 career record.
The score continued to seesaw throughout the evening as Skyler Davis rallied for a 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 victory over Evan Andrews at No. 3.
The Hens retook control with a No. 1 victory as Troy Beneck outlasted Badr Ouabdelmoumen, 6-3, 4-6, 6-3. Beneck wrapped up his junior season with a 21-10 overall record while going 19-8 at the No. 1 spot. The three-time All-CAA honoree holds a career record of 52-29, good for sixth in Delaware men’s tennis history.
The Dragons tied it once again at 3-3 when Alex Fioravante fought back for a 3-6, 7-6 (9-7) win over Jason Derene at No. 6.
The match was decided in the final three-setter at No. 5 as Xabier Saavedra battled past Mike Furr, 7-6 (5), 6-7 (5), 6-3, to clinch the victory that will send Drexel to Saturday’s semifinals against the first-seeded UNCW Seahawks.
FINAL SCORE – Drexel 4, Delaware 3
#1 Troy Beneck (Delaware) d. Badr Ouabdelmoumen (Drexel), 6-3, 4-6, 6-3
#2 Adam Lawton (Delaware) d. Jeganathan Sri (Drexel), 6-2, 6-2
#3 Skyler Davis (Drexel) d. Evan Andrews (Delaware), 3-6, 6-3, 6-4
#4 Nolan Gelman (Delaware) d. Dan Koehler (Drexel), 6-2, 6-2
#5 Xabier Saavedra (Drexel) d. Mike Furr (Delaware), 7-6 (5), 6-7 (5), 6-3
#6 Alex Fioravante (Drexel) d. Jason Derene (Delaware), 3-6, 7-6 (7), 6-4
Order of Finish: 4, 2, 3, 1, 6, 5
#1 Davis/Koehler (Drexel) d. Beneck/Lawton (Delaware), 8-3
#2 Ouabdelmoumen/Saavedra (Drexel) d. Andrews/Gelman (Delaware), 8-4
#3 Sri/Dan Hansen (Drexel) vs. Derene/Alex Sweet (Delaware) – DNF, 6-6
Order of Finish: 1, 2