Men’s Tennis: Highlanders Lose at The University of North Carolina at Greensboro But Bounce Back

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By Lucas Carr | lcarr15@radford.edu

The Radford Men’s Tennis team traveled to Greensboro, NC this past Friday for their second match of the season. Starting off with an early lead, the Highlanders, unfortunately, fell 4-3 behind UNC Greensboro.

The Highlanders were coming off of their first win in their first match against North Carolina A&T where they bested their opponents 6 to 1. At the beginning of the afternoon, The Highlanders led 2-1, but after a few back-and-forth matches, the Spartans came out on top.

The first overall point for the day was won by the double partners of Radford’s Michiel Meekers and Alexandros Caldwell who leaped over UNCG’s Hugh Knapp and Ian Melnik.

The Radford doubles team of Croatia-born Matko Varga and the new Highlander Andres Silva sealed the first point of the day against Eric Whisnant and Jack Burkill of UNCG. Both matches ended in a 6-2 victory for the Highlanders.

The first singles match to end with Rodrigo Magalhaes besting Nico Grewe, 6-1, 6-2 tied the overall points at 1-1. Radford then retook the lead as 6’5 Meekers came out victorious against Cooper Wyatt 6-2, 6-2.

Unfortunately, the Highlanders lost three of their next four singles matches jumping the Spartan lead out to 4-2 on the day. Varga ended the day as a bright spot with a tie-breaking win over Spartan Logan Blaser, tallying the score at 6-3, 3-6, 6-4. His win was not enough as the Highlanders came away with the first loss of the season, 4-3.

Varga is the only Radford player that has multiple wins in both singles and doubles play, and Meekers is the only Highlander left that is undefeated in singles matches.

Coming off this first loss of the season, the Highlanders then quickly traveled to Belmont Abbey College in Charlotte, NC for their second road match in a row. This was a tale of two games as Radford was able to sweep the Crusaders 7-0.

Belmont Abbey had more experience than the Highlanders going into Saturday’s 11 o’clock match-up as they had already competed in eight matches prior to their 7-0 loss to Radford.

Matko Varga, again, played a huge role in Saturday’s match as he was able to help clinch the win in Charlotte.

When asked how it felt to help clinch the victory, Varga said, “It feels really good. Today was an important match to win, to bounce back after yesterday’s close loss to UNCG. Today was a good day. We all got a win, and it feels really good to get the clinch for my team.”

The Highlanders will return home Friday, Feb. 15 at 2 p.m. to welcome Bluefield College but will then soon hit the road for meetings with Hampton and Winthrop. These two matches will be the first of many soon to come matches in the Big South Conference.

Let’s continue supporting the Radford Men’s Tennis team this season as they look to improve on last year’s record of 10-12. Big South Championship begins April 17 and continues through April 20.

Photo Credit: (RU Athletics)