VIRGINIA BEACH -- Rookies provided Virginia Wesleyan College's men's tennis team with crucial points Saturday as the Marlins defeated Randolph-Macon College 5-4 in Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) competition at the Everett Tennis Center.
The victory was part of a sweep for the Marlins (3-1, 2-1), who followed the win over the Yellow Jackets with an 8-1 non-conference victory over Penn St.-Abington. R-MC dropped to 3-3 overall and to 1-2 in the ODAC. PSU-A had a two-match winning streak snapped and fell to 2-3 overall
Kenneth Downing (Washington, D.C.) and Brendan Kelleher (Baltimore, Md./Towson) were key for VWC in the win over R-MC, winning at No. 2 and No. 6 singles, respectively. Downing pulled out a 6-4, 4-6, 6-3 decision over Connor Hoerr (Virginia Beach/Princess Anne) and Kelleher was impressive in a 6-0, 6-0 win over Ira Usry (Columbia, S.C./Hammond).
"Kenneth came up big for us today winning the clinching match 6-3 in the third set, allowing us to escape with a 5-4 win," said VWC Tennis Director Darryl Cummings. "In the last 48 hours Kenneth has won two three-set matches against tough conference schools and that is a significant achievement for a first-semester freshman. Brendan also came up with a solid performance playing his first college match for Virginia Wesleyan."
Downing and Kelleher were two of four Marlins that finished 2-0 in singles play. Sophomore Graham Wilson (Newport News/Menchville) was part of that group, winning twice in straight sets at the No. 1 flight, and sophomoreTyler Chang (Hvre de Grace, Md./Tome School) posted the win at No. 5 against R-MC and No. 4 against PSU-A.
Sophomore Drew Tomajczyk (Chesterfield/Home schooled) and junior Griffin Graves (Middleburg/Middleburg Academy) led the way in doubles for the Marlins with a pair of wins, including an 8-0 decision against PSU-A.
The Marlins return to competition on Monday, March 10, hosting Maryland's Washington College at 2 p.m. at the Everett Tennis Center.
VIRGINIA WESLEYAN 5, RANDOLPH-MACON 4
1.Byrd/Baxter (RMC) d. Wilson/Downing (VWC) 8-4
2.Adam/Stein (RMC) d. Bullock/Chang (VWC) 8-6
3.Tomajczyk/Graves (VWC) d. Usry/Hoerr (RMC) 8-4
1.Graham Wilson (VWC) d. Ryan Byrd (RMC) 6-1,6-2
2.Kenneth Downing (VWC) d. Connor Hoerr (RMC) 6-4,4-6,6-3
3.Michael Baxter (RMC) d. Drew Tomajczyk (VWC) 6-4,5-7,6-2
4.John Adam (RMC) d. Spencer Bullock (VWC) 6-3,6-2
5. Tyler Chang (VWC) d. Brantley Stein (RMC) 6-4,6-2
6.Brendan Kelleher (VWC) d. Ira Usry (RMC) 6-0,6-0
VIRGINIA WESLEYAN 8, PENN ST.-ABINGTON 1
1.Wilson/Downing (VWC) d. Howell/Dunson (PSA) 8-1
2.Tomajczyk/Graves (VWC) d. Ly/Wilkinson (PSA) 8-0
3.Searcy/Kelleher (VWC) d. Herman/Boral (PSA) 8-4
1.Graham Wilson (VWC) d. Herman (PSA) 6-2,6-0
2.Kenneth Downing (VWC) d. Howell (PSA) 6-0,6-0
3.Drew Tomajczyk (VWC) d. Ly (PSA) 6-1,6-1
4.Tyler Chang (VWC) d. Dunson (PSA) 6-1,6-4
5.Brendan Kelleher (VWC) d. Boral (PSA) 6-0,6-1
6.Wilkinson (PSA) d Kyler Racey (VWC) 6-3,6-2