Men’s Tennis Begins Season with Home Tournament
ANNAPOLIS, Md. –– Matthew Lee (So., San Diego, Calif.) advancing to the championship match of the C singles flight highlighted the efforts of the Navy men’s tennis team at the Joe Hunt Invitational held this weekend in Annapolis.
Lee posted a 6-3, 6-1 victory over Delaware’s Justice Jones in the first round, then defeated George Mason’s Daniel Gutierrez in the second round by an identical score. He reached the championship match with a 7-5, 2-6, 6-3 win over Georgetown’s Josh Marchalik. Lee would fall in the title tilt to Georgetown’s Connor Lee by scores of 7-5, 6-4.
Three additional Mids competed in the championship half of singles brackets. Andrew Ton (Fr., Milipatis, Calif.) placed third in the A flight, Zach Jennings (So., Snellville, Ga.) lost in the A flight’s second round and Peter Lohrbach (Fr., Little Neck, N.Y.) lost in the second round in the C flight.
Four Navy doubles teams also advanced to the championship half of draws, with a pair of tandems finishing in third place. The team of Greg Durham (So., Melbourne Beach, Calif.) and Jennings placed third in the A flight and the duo of Romesh Kahatapitiya (Fr., Virginia Beach, Va.) and Gabriel Pilones (So., Bradenton, Fla.) claimed third place in the B fight.
Additionally, Joshua Martin (Sr., Foley, Ala.) and Walker Sims (Sr., Memphis, Tenn.) placed fifth in the C flight and Andrew Hicks (Jr., Haddon Heights, N.J.) and Lohrbach took eighth place in the B flight.
The A flight singles final saw Georgetown’s Peter Beatty defeat Temple’s Thomas Sevel, 7-5, 6-4, to win the Joe Hunt Invitational.
“It was a great weekend of competition,” said Navy head coach Chris Garner. “The team improved as the tournament progressed. Matthew Lee had a great run to the finals. He played some very solid all around tennis to secure three wins. Andrew Ton also had a good run in his first collegiate event. Greg Durham and Walker Sims each recovered from first-round losses to win three straight matches.”
In addition to the vast majority of the team competing in Annapolis this weekend, team captain Aries Wong (Sr., Bethesda, Md.) competed in the 32-player singles draw at the 42nd annual Milwaukee Tennis Classic. Wong lost in the first round to Old Dominion’s Javier Maestre, 6-2, 6-1, then fell to Nebraska’s Toby Boyer, 6-2, 6-7 (5-7), 1-0 (10-6), in the consolation bracket.
“Competing at the Milwaukee Tennis Classic was a great opportunity and experience for Aries,” said Navy associate head coach John Moreland, who accompanied Wong on the trip. “He played two very solid players and showed that he and Navy can compete on the biggest stage. A few points were all that separated him from a birth in consolation semifinal. It was good to see him get better and stronger as the tournament progressed.
“Off the court MTC founder Chas Mulcahy provided Aries with a wonderful opportunity to address all of the players, coaches and staff in attendance. He did an excellent job conveying what it means to be a midshipman. We were humbled to see and hear the support from so many people.”