Men’s tennis edges Delaware 4-1

Courtney Scrib

Once again Villanova’s men’s tennis team proved themselves unbeatable on Sept. 25 against the University of Delaware. After being edged out by Delaware in last year’s meeting, the team was determined and ultimately successful in preventing history from repeating itself last Thursday afternoon at the Villanova Tennis Complex. “This was a great win for us,” junior Ricardo Barladi said. “We lost to Delaware last year in a very close match, [but] this year we were able to pull it off without any real problems.”Baraldi won in straight sets against Blue Hen Adam Liebman, (6-4, 6-2) at third singles. While he and senior co-captain John Toppel easily defeated their Delaware opponents in the No. 2 doubles position (8-3), senior co-captain Lucas Kaster and junior Aaron Kusza were forced to put up a harder fight in No. 1 doubles play, only to lose 8-3. With each team having one loss and one win, the outcome of the doubles point depended on the winner of the No. 3 doubles match. ‘Nova’s Junior Angel Rubio and freshman Alex Villalobos did not disappoint, posting a close 9-7 victory over Delaware’s Ari Zweig and Jon Edwards. In singles action, freshman David Harring, playing six singles, dominated his competitor in straight sets. After coming back from a 5-1 deficit in the first set and prevailing in a tiebreaker, he won the second set in 6-1. Only moments before rain began pouring down, Villanova managed to earn the fourth and deciding point with Rubio’s gritty three set victory at No. 5 singles. “It was definitely a tough match,” Rubio said. The rain prevented Kusza and freshman Alex Villalobos, the No. 1 and No. 4 singles players, respectively, from completing their matches. Both players were in tight second sets after having won their first sets. Overall, the players, as well as head coach, Bob Batman, were satisfied with the team’s performance. “Using our depth in both singles and doubles against a comparable team provided the difference in the outcome,” Batman said. “This was a solid team win and hopefully lays a firm foundation for the type of play that we will need in order to be successful when we enter our spring season.””We got a glimpse of what our team is made of,” Kusza added. “Achieving a tough doubles point along with winning three tough singles matches before the rain, we showed a great team effort.” The team plays in their last fall season competition, the Towson Invitational, on Oct. 3 and 4, where they will face, among other teams, Big East opponent Georgetown, and try to maintain their undefeated 4-0 record. Players like Kusza welcome the challenge. “In light of our recent success, we’re going to be a tough team to beat.”