Tribe Tennis Lose Tight Contest to Liberty, 4-3

Senior George Davis serves to his opponent during the Tribe's match against Richmond on Feb. 18, 2022. JUSTIN SHERLOCK // THE FLAT HAT

Saturday, Feb. 4, William and Mary (1-2) dropped a close match against Liberty (3-3) 4-3 at the McCormack-Nagelsen Tennis Center. This match marks the third of four season-opening home matches for the Tribe.

Despite momentum from its previous comeback victory against South Carolina State, the Tribe once again failed to win the doubles point. Liberty’s doubles No. 3 team of senior Beau Pelletier and junior Thando Longwe-Smit defeated the Tribe’s team of graduate student Daniel Pellerito and sophomore Alexander Karman 6-3.

In the No. 1 doubles match, the Tribe found success with the tandem of graduate student Bill Duo and senior George Davis. The pair lead Liberty seniors Josh Wilson and Christiaan Worst 5-4, but Liberty clinched the contest with a doubles point win from the Flames’ No. 2 team of junior Deji Thomas-Smith and freshman Luis Felipe Miguel. The visiting pair defeated graduate students Joseph Brailovsky and  Andres Silva 6-4.

The Tribe is yet to claim a doubles point in its three matches of the season so far.

Liberty extended its lead to 2-0, when Pelletier handily defeated Duo 6-2 and 6-4 in the No. 3 singles slot. At the No. 1 spot, Liberty’s All-Atlantic Sun Conference first-teamer Josh Wilson battled with Davis in a tightly-contested bout. Davis won the opening set 6-3, only to drop the following two sets to Wilson 6-3 and 6-2, respectively, increasing Liberty’s lead to 3-0.

Felipe Miguel clinched the team victory for Liberty at the No. 5 singles spot with a win over Pellerito [6-3, 7-6] in straight sets.

The Tribe rallied back with Karman securing the first point for the Green and Gold at the No. 6 singles slot. After losing the first set to Liberty’s Longwe-Smit 6-4, Karman recovered with back-to-back set victories, winning the second set 7-5 and the tiebreaker 10-5. After transferring from Penn State, this marks Karman’s first dual-match victory with the Tribe and his seventh overall on the year.

At No. 2 singles, Brailovsky won in straight-sets, outplaying Liberty’s other All-Atlantic Sun Conference first-teamer Thomas-Smith, 7-5 and 7-6. Brailovsky advances his record at the No. 2 spot to 2-1, while improving his team-leading singles record to 12-6 on the year. 

Joseph claimed the third and final point for the Tribe at the No. 4 singles spot. After winning the first set 6-4, Joseph dropped the second set 6-1 to Worst, pushing the match into a tiebreaker set. Joseph overpowered Worst in a commanding 7-1 performance, clinching the point and resulting in a final score of 4-3 to Liberty.

The Tribe will look to bounce back against Hampton University in its first Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) conference match of the season on Friday, Feb. 10, at the McCormack-Nagelsen Tennis Center. This game will mark the end of the Tribe’s four-match season-opening homestand.


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