CARY, N.C. – The Duke men’s tennis team fell in the ACC Championship second round to Florida State, 4-2, on Thursday afternoon at Cary Tennis Park.
In doubles action, senior Catalin Mateas and sophomore Sean Sculley cruised to a 6-2 victory on court two over Bryn Nahrung and Lucas Poullain. Florida State evened out the doubles courts with a 6-3 win over senior Jason Lapidus and junior Nick Stachowiak on court one, making court three the deciding court for the doubles point.
Juniors Spencer Furman and Robert Levine battled Chase Wood and Juan Martin Jalif on court three, with the Blue Devil duo taking a 6-5 lead late. The Seminoles tied it at six all, forcing a tiebreaker. Wood and Martin Jalif lead 4-3 in the tiebreak, before Levine and Furman stormed back to lead 5-4. After a back and forth battle, Florida State led 7-6 and was a game away from clinching the doubles point. Furman and Levine battled back and tied it at seven all, then rallied to take court three 7-6 (9-7).
The win for Furman and Levine is their eighth of the season (8-2) and fourth straight. Mateas and Sculley improved to 6-2 on the season.
In a rematch of Sunday’s thrilling court five battle, Sculley and Rana Roop Singh Bhullar squared off again at the number five position in singles play, with Sculley winning in straight sets 6-3, 6-0, to put Duke up 2-0. No. 40 Poullain defeated No. 100 Stachowiak 6-3, 6-3 on court one to put Florida State within a point, 2-1.
The Seminoles tied the match up at two all after Knaff defeated Furman 6-4, 6-3 on court two. On court six, Lapidus took set one 6-4 over Richard Thongoana, however, Thongoana won the next two 6-3, 6-3 to put Florida State one point away from clinching the match. The match was clinched for the Seminoles after Martin Jalif bounced back from a first set loss to Mateas with a 6-4 set three victory, winning 4-6, 6-3, 6-4.
“It was another battle with Florida State that obviously came down to the wire,” said head coach Ramsey Smith. “I am proud of our guys, and all six of them left everything on the court, and that is all you can ask for as a coach.”
Duke closes out the season with an overall record of 11-14, while Florida State improved to 18-9 overall and advances to the ACC Championship Quarterfinals against Virginia.