Air Force Downs Loyola Marymount, 5-2, in Men's Tennis
The Falcons, winners of seven consecutive matches, started strong by winning doubles matches at the Nos. 1 and 3 positions to capture the doubles point.Â The No. 1 tandem of brothers Chris and Greg Zielinski improved to 15-1 this season with an 8-4 victory over Carsten Bitschkus and Leopold Grauebig.Â AFA's Kyle Rainey and Rene Ramirez defeated Ryan Gerstner and Iman Nilipour, 8-4, at No. 3.
Ramirez and Chris Zielinski won dramatic three-set singles matches to clinch the team victory for Air Force, now 13-4 this season. Ramirez defeated Grauebig, 7-6, 6-3, 6-3, at No. 3 singles, while Zielinski came from behind to win the No. 4 match, 6-7, 7-6, 6-4 over LMU's Beau Berglund.Â Falcon Eric Pittman handled Bitschkus at No. 1 singles, 6-4, 6-2, and Justin Mancinelli split sets with Gerstner at the No. 5 spot, 3-6 and 6-2, before winning a super tiebreaker for the third set, 10-8.
The Falcons begin play against Mountain West Conference opponents next weekend in Provo, Utah.Â Air Force faces the University of Utah on Friday, Mar. 23 and BYU on Saturday, Mar. 24.Â
Match Summary Air Force 5, Loyola Marymount 2 Singles 1. Eric Pittman (AFA) def. Carsten Bitschkus 6-4, 6-2 2. Johannes Asuja (LMU) def. Kyle Rainey 7-6, 7-5 3. Rene Ramirez (AFA) def. Leopold Grauebig 7-6, 3-6, 6-3 4. Chris Zielinski (AFA) def. Beau Berglund 6-7, 7-6, 6-4 5. Justin Mancinelli (AFA) def. Ryan Gerstner 3-6, 6-2, (10-8) 6. Iman Nilipour (LMU) def. Doug Fike 6-3, 6-4 Doubles 1. C. Zielinski/Greg Zielinski (AFA) def. Bitschkus/Grauebig 8-4 2. Asuja/Berglund (LMU) def. Pittman/Mancinelli 8-4 3. Rainey/Ramirez(AFA) def. Gerstner/Nilipour 8-4