WILLIAMSVILLE, NY - A third set tie break ace at first singles proved to be the clincher for the St. Thomas Aquinas College men's tennis team, as they took down conference foe Daemen College 5-2 in Western New York.
The Spartans dropped the doubles point for the first time in four matches, taking some luster off of Enej Hascevic '20 (Palma de Mallorca, Spain) and Paul Voigt's '21 (Cologne, Germany) 6-2 win at second doubles. The win marked the fourth in a row and twelfth of the season for the duo, who finished ECC regular season play with a 4-1 doubles record.
Voigt also continued his streak at third singles, winning his fourth straight match where he lost the first set only to win the second and third sets for the wins. His victory evened the score of the match, while moving him to 4-1 in ECC singles play.\
Junior Tim Fleerkamp '20 (Waalre, Netherlands) gave the Spartans a 2-1 match lead with a dramatic win at second singles. The Dutch sensation was an artist on the court as he recaptured his old form and imposed his will on his opponent. His first set tie break win deflated the opposition, and Fleerkamp to the win in straight sets.
Luke Taplin '20 (Auckland, New Zealand) made it 3-1 in favor of the Spartans with a victory at sixth singles. Up 6-5 in the second, the Kiwi uncorked a massive serve to force his opponent's return to fall wide for the win, setting up the clincher at first singles.
Up 6-2 in the tie break, freshman Marcel Volz '22 (Iffezheim, Germany) launched a missile that went untouched as the freshman remained unbeaten in ECC play, finishing the regular season a perfect 5-0 all at first singles. Volz easily took the first set 6-1, but faltered in the second to force the third set showdown. He now has a team-leading fourteen singles victories on the year.
The Wildcats would take a third set win at fourth singles to put the match at 4-2, and Hasicevic would round out the scoring with a third set victory at fifth singles for the Spartans.
Finishing 4-1 in conference play, the Spartans clinched the 2-seed in the East Coast Conference tournament, and will face East Region power New York Institute of Technology in two weeks on April 26th at host Queens College. Next up for the Spartans is a home match against regional foe Post University. First serve is set for 3:00 PM, weather permitting.