Flushing, N.Y. - The St. Thomas Aquinas College men's tennis team defeated New York Institute of Technology on Friday, advancing to the finals of the East Coast Conference men's tennis tournament for the first time in program history. The 4-2 win marked the second victory over the Bears this spring - the only two wins over NYIT since the 2010-11 season.
STAC Tops NYIT to Advance to First-Ever ECC Men's Tennis Final
Apr 26, 2019
The Spartans took an early 1-0 lead by breezing through the doubles portion, with 6-0 wins at second and third doubles. Enej Hasicevic (Palma de Mallorca, Spain) and Paul Voigt (Cologne, Germany) paired for their 16th doubles win of the season, tying a program record for most wins in a season in the process. Freshman companions Marcel Volz (Iffezheim, Germany) and Mitch Harrison (Brisbane, Australia) won at third doubles for their eighth win on the year.
NYIT even the score at 1-1 with a win at sixth singles, but the STAC answered back with wins at fifth and fourth singles to make it for the 2nd-seeded Spartans. Hasicevic won in straight sets 6-2, 7-5 at fifth singles, while Voigt again went to three sets for his victory at fourth singles. Volz dropped a heartbreaker to the fourth-ranked East Region singles player, setting up a showdown at second and third singles.
With the match at 3-2 for the Spartans, Gijs Offringa (Hollandsche Rading, Netherlands) dropped his first set 6-2 at third singles while Tim Fleerkamp (Waalre, Netherlands) won his first set 6-4 in the second slot. Offringa would battle back and take his second set 6-3, utilizing a wicked serve and deft volleys for quick points. Fleerkamp lost a tough second set 6-3, but was dealing in the third that saw him up 5-4 at the changeover. Down 5-3 in his own third set, Offringa tapped into his magic from the second set and won four straight games to take the point and clinch the match for the Spartans and advance to the finals.
The win was the eighth in a row and fourteenth of the year for the Spartans, establishing new program records for both. The victory also marked the seventh win of the season against a regionally ranked opponent. They will play No. 1 seed and host Queens College on Saturday at the Queens College Tennis Center. First serve is set for noon.
Provided by the St. Thomas Aquinas Sports Information Department.