Mena secures first singles nod of the spring in loss at Drake

Mena secures first singles nod of the spring in loss at Drake

By Dylan Vazzano, TTU Sports Information Coordinator

DES MOINES, Iowa – The Tennessee Tech tennis team opened a busy stretch up north with a 6-1 loss at Drake in the first of three-straight matches in three-straight days in Des Moines.

No. 28 Eduardo Mena registered his first singles win of the spring, serving as the only Golden Eagle to dent the scoreboard against a Bulldog club that earned a place in the NCAA Tournament a season ago. The two-time OVC Player of the Year rallied back after falling 6-4 in the first set to Vinny Gillespie in the No. 1 slot, bouncing back to take the second set, 6-4, before a 10-8 nod in the third set to tie a ribbon on the top-spot matchup.

The Bulldogs (1-0) set the tone with a win in doubles action, thanks to victories in the No. 1 and No. 3 showdowns. The top-tandem of Vinny Gillespie and Barny Thorold toppled Eduardo Mena and Riku Kubotoa, 6-4, while Tom Hands and Finley Hall collected a 6-3 victory over Wenceslao Albin and Arthur Justo in the No. 3 position.

Jorge Alfonzo and Gonzalo Garcia notched a 7-6 win in the No. 2 slot over Ben Wood and Ben Clark.

Tech (0-2) would go on to drop five-of-six singles battles despite Mena's triumph at the top of the lineup. Jorge Alfonzo was upended, 6-1, 6-2, to Tom Hands in the No. 2 position. No. 124 Ben Clark took down Wenceslao Albin, 6-3, 7-5, in the No. 3 affair.

In the No. 4 matchup Barry Thorold raced to a 7-6, 6-4 victory over Riku Kubota. Ben Wood captured a 6-1, 7-6 nod in the No. 5 spot against Gonzalo Garcia, and Finley Hall edged Marc Mila, 6-1, 6-4, in the No. 6 slot.

The Golden Eagles will be right back at it Saturday afternoon, squaring off with Northern Illinois at 1 p.m. CT from the Roger Knapp Tennis Center.  

Photo by Thomas Corhern, TTU Sports Information