Pioneers upset 16th-ranked Queens 4-3 in SAC showdown

Pioneers upset 16th-ranked Queens 4-3 in SAC showdown

CHARLOTTE, N.C. --- Yago Fernandez earned a three-set win in the final singles match as Tusculum University defeated 16th-ranked Queens University of Charlotte 4-3 in South Atlantic Conference men's tennis action Wednesday afternoon.

Fernandez, ranked 73rd in this week's ITA Division II singles rankings, beat Mathias Degardin 4-6, 6-4, 6-4 at flight three to give the Pioneers (9-3, 4-1 SAC) the win over the Royals (8-4, 4-2 SAC). At 16th in the latest ITA team rankings, Queens is the highest-ranked opponent that Tusculum has defeated in program history.

Tusculum trailed after doubles and were down 3-2 with two singles matches remaining. However, Tomas Guedes de Almeida beat Paolo Bompieri 7-6 (7-5), 6-4 at flight two in his season debut to level the match at 3-3 and set up Fernandez for the winning point.

The Royals won two of the three doubles matches to take the team point, with the Pioneers earning a win at flight three as Fernandez teamed with Jacco Mensinga for a 7-6 (7-3) win over Agustin Aran Martin and Degardin.

In singles, Queens won a matchup of nationally-ranked players at flight one as 44th-ranked Martin beat 36th-ranked David Akinpetide 6-2, 6-2. Tusculum's other singles wins were at flight four, where Manuel Guedes de Almeida beat Joel Dunlap 6-2, 6-3 and at flight six as Gabriel Yaguar defeated Kasper Rolfsen 7-6 (7-3), 6-2.

The Pioneers will visit Lenoir-Rhyne to face the 37th-ranked Bears on Friday afternoon at 1:30 p.m.