Benjamins Win Closes out Nova
The Georgetown University men’s tennis team defeated host Villanova this past Saturday, 4-3, to earn their first BIG EAST win of the 2000-20001 season. The Hoyas battled through an early deficit and horrible weather conditions to secure the victory over the rival Wildcats.
The match began with the doubles competition in spite of 40-degree weather and a steady drizzle. At # 1 doubles, sophomore Marc Lohser (Woodbury, N.Y./Syosset) and freshman Dennis Cravedi (Bethesda, Md./Georgetown Prep) were unable to overcome an early service break and dropped their match, 8-6. The crucial doubles point was to be decided at #2 singles. Georgetown’s duo of junior Nick Sklavounos (Waterford, Conn./Waterford) and freshman Michael Nelson (Trinidad & Tobago/Port-of-Spain) stayed even with the Wildcats’ B. Adams and Ryan Devine for most of the match, but Sklavounos failed to hold his serve at 6-7, and the Hoyas dropped the match 8-6. Georgetown’s #3 doubles team of junior Andre Benjamin (New York, N.Y./Fieldston) and Troy Crichlow (Wilton, Mass./Wilton) responded with a 9-7 victory over Nova’s A.J. Rohde and Paul Moore to close out the doubles competition.
Trailing 1-0 after losing the doubles point, the Hoyas looked to rebound in singles competition, but the early results were not promising. Villanova’s J. Schofield defeated Lohser at #2 singles, 6-0, 6-2, while at #4 singles Ryan Devine dropped Cravedi, 6-3, 7-5, to give the ‘Cats a commanding 3-0 lead. Troy Crichlow began to dig the Hoyas out of their hole by posting his second victory of the day, a 6-4, 6-2 win at #3 singles over Rohde. The turning point came at #1 singles, where Sklavounos hoped to bounce back from his doubles loss. After dropping the first set, 6-3, Sklavounos answered by taking the next two sets, 6-1 and 6-4, to bring the Hoyas within one point of the Wildcats.
The final two matches to take the court were #5 and #6 singles. At #6 singles, freshman Michael Nelson dominated ‘Nova’s Justin Goulet, 6-0, 6-2, to even the match at three. The outcome was to be decided at #5 singles, where two veterans, Hoya junior Andre Benjamin and Wildcat senior Casey Simmons, squared off against each other. Benjamin proved to be too strong for the senior, posting a 6-4, 6-4 victory and giving the Hoyas’ the 4-3 win.
The Hoyas improved to 7-9 on the year and 1-1 in BIG EAST competition. Georgetown returns to action on Wednesday, March 28, at cross-town rival American University.