Feb. 28, 2013
THE FLATS – Eduardo Segura and Juan Melian each rallied from first-set losses to score the tying and clinching points for Georgia Tech, lifting Georgia Tech from a 3-1 deficit to a 4-3 win over Georgia State Thursday afternoon at the Ken Byers Tennis Complex.
Tech evened its spring record at 5-5 heading into a double-header at home Sunday against No. 8 Tennessee and Kennesaw State. Georgia State suffered its third straight loss and fell to 7-6.
Melian, a senior from Las Palmas, Spain, came back from dropping the first set to defeat Thomas Cook, 3-6, 6-2, 6-1, on court 2 for the tying point. Segura, a sophomore from Madrid, Spain, also dropped his first set against Lucas Santa Ana, but rallied to win the next two sets by identical 6-2 scores to lift the Jackets to victory.
“We showed some guts to hang in there after dropping five of the six first sets. We knew all of the matches were going to be tough,” said Tech head coach Kenny Thorne. “(Freshman) Nathan (Rakitt) finished off very strong and did what he needed to do. Juan Melian came back and played very solid tennis. Eddie had the best focus that he’d had all season, and he served very smartly.
“They’re a tough team, and we needed to fight. That’s our only chance.”
The Panthers put Tech in a deep hole after dropping the doubles point, winning the first set in five of the six singles matches and finishing off straight-set wins on courts 1, 3 and 6.
Victor Valente, ranked 81st in the nation, grabbed a 6-4, 6-4 victory for his second victory this year over No. 53 Juan Spir at No. 1. Tech’s Vikram Hundal, trailing Robert Schulze on court 3, retired with an injury for GSU’s second point, and Sofiane Chevallier gave the Panthers a 3-1 lead with a 6-3, 6-1 win over the Jackets’ Anish Sharma on court 6.
But Georgia State was unable to hold the advantage. Rakitt squeezed out a first-set win in a tiebreaker and went on to dispatch Paul Schuette, 7-6, 6-2, on court 5. Melian followed by winning his fourth consecutive win to even the match at 3-3, and Segura scored Tech’s clinching point for the second time this spring.
“I had a little trouble starting the match, trying to do some crazy stuff, but I had to stay within my pattern and was able to break him,” said Segura. “It was a great win for us,”
Tech pulled out the doubles point in thrilling fashion after all three matches stood tied 6-6 simultaneously. The Yellow Jackets’ third-ranked tandem of Juan Spir and Vikram Hundal suffered their second loss of the spring on court 1, watching a 6-3 lead evaporate in an 8-6 loss to Valente and Santa Ana.
Their teammates rallied to pick up the Jackets, however. Melian and Rakitt won the last three games on court 2 to defeat Schulze and Cook, 8-6, while Segura and Colin Edwards outlasted Schuette and Zedde, 9-7, on court 3.
“They played very well at No. 1 to beat us, and when they one that, it got very interesting,” said Thorne. “They put pressure on our two and three, and that was great for them to be in that situation. We needed that as a team.”
#67 Georgia Tech 4, #61 Georgia State 3
Feb 28, 2013 at Ken Byers Tennis Complex
1. #81 Victor Valente (GSU) def. #53 Juan Spir (GT) 6-4, 6-4
2. Juan Melian (GT) def. Thomas Cook (GSU) 3-6, 6-2, 6-1
3. Robert Schulze (GSU) def. Vikram Hundal (GT) 6-4, 2-1, retired
4. Eduardo Segura (GT) def. Lucas Santa Ana (GSU) 4-6, 6-2, 6-2
5. Nathan Rakitt (GT) def. Paul Schuette (GSU) 7-6, 6-2
6. Sofiane Chevallier (GSU) def. Anish Sharma (GT) 6-3, 6-1
1. Victor Valente/Lucas Santa Ana (GSU) def. #3 Juan Spir/Vikram Hundal (GT) 8-6
2. Juan Melian/Nathan Rakitt (GT) def. Robert Schulze/Thomas Cook (GSU) 8-6
3. Eduardo Segura/Colin Edwards (GT) def. Paul Schuette/Andrew Zedde (GSU) 9-7
Georgia State 7-6; National ranking #61
Georgia Tech 5-5; National ranking #67
Order of finish: Doubles (1,2,3); Singles (3,1,6,5,2,4)
Match played indoors