Eastern Florida State College Men’s Tennis Finish Season in National Semifinals, Best Finish in Program History

By  //  May 18, 2023

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Division I National Tournament in McKinney, Texas

The Eastern Florida State College men’s tennis team wrapped up a historic run at the NJCAA Division I National Tournament Thursday in McKinney, Texas. (EFSC Image)

BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – The Eastern Florida State College men’s tennis team wrapped up a historic run at the NJCAA Division I National Tournament Thursday in McKinney, Texas.

The Titans reached the national semifinals in seven events for the first time in program history but did not reach Friday’s championship matches.

The four Titans who reached the semifinals in singles took the court first, kicking off a busy day of tennis at the Courts of McKinney in Texas.

Hugo Car met No. 2 seed Diego Dalisay of Tyler Junior College in the No. 1 singles semifinal and Car lost the first set 6-3. Down 3-0 in the second set, Car went on a run. The freshman broke Dalisay twice and tied the match 3-3. But Dalisay would break back and went on to advance with the 6-3 win in the second set.

Luca Gonzalez fell at No. 2 singles to No. 1 seed Boruch Skierkier of Cowley College. Skierkier advanced to the final with the 6-1, 6-0 victory. It marked the final tennis match for Gonzalez as a Titan. Gonzalez made it to the national tournament semifinals in each of his two seasons with the Titans.

At No. 3 singles, Eric Tripathi lost to Tyler Junior College’s Tim Riedel 6-3, 6-3 in his semifinal match as the No. 2 seed Riedel advanced to the championship match.

The match of the morning was at No. 5 singles as Jett Leong played a tight match with Tyler Junior College’s Emilio Vila.

After losing the first set 6-4, Leong battled with Vila for every point in the second set and held his serve to force a tiebreaker. After getting down 3-1 in the tiebreaker, Leong rattled off three straight points to take a 4-3 lead. It looked like he may force a third set, but up 8-7 Vilas hit a winner to win the match 6-4, 7-6(7).

After a short break, all three doubles teams took the court in semifinal matches.

The No. 1 doubles team of Car and Gonzalez lost in the semifinal to the Tyler Junior College duo of Dalisay and Juan Carlos Garcia who won 6-4, 6-4 to advance to the championship match.

The other two doubles teams went to three sets.

The No. 2 doubles team of Colin Tavares and Jack Dixon came held on to force a tiebreaker in the first set. The duo would take a 3-0 lead in the tiebreaker and then traded points until they finished with four straight points to win the first set 7-3.

The Cowley duo of Hanamichi Carvajal and Taiyo Hirano would come right back and win the next two, 6-2 and 6-0 to advance in front of a loud group from Cowley.

IN the tightest match of the day, the No. 3 doubles team of Eavan Attie and Tripathi teamed up to also apply the early pressure by winning the first set. Attie and Tripathi would force a tiebreaker in the first set and came up big with the 7-3 win to take a 1-0 advantage.

The second set saw The Titans have a couple of chances to end it but Tyler would end up setting it to a tiebreaker once again. This time it was Tyler who got the win, winning the tiebreaker 7-1. Tied 1-1, the two would battle in a hotly-contested third set that saw the Titans battle back from an early 3-1 deficit but could not tie things up, falling 6-4 in the third.

The Titans are in third place overall which would be the highest finish in program history.