BOSTON, Mass. – With serious tournament implications on the line men's tennis hosted Bridgewater State University in a Little East Conference match Saturday afternoon at the Boston College High School Tennis Courts. Knowing that if they were to win they would claim the number two seed in next week's tournament the Beacons (8-6, 3-3 Little East) played a very competitive match with the Bears (8-5, 4-2 Little East), unfortunately it was Bridgewater State that earned the 6-3 win and the second seed in the LEC tournament.
With the loss, the Beacons fell into a three-way tie for third with Southern Maine and Western Connecticut State University. With each team completely even after the first set of tie-breakers the third, fourth, and fifth seeds of next week's tournament will be decided by a coin-toss. The result of that coin toss will be released later this weekend, with the first round of the tournament set to begin on Tuesday.
In Saturday's match, Bridgewater State gained the early 2-1 advantage after taking the second and third doubles matches. UMass Boston's David Hernandez (Bogota, Colombia) and Charles Lai (Boston, Mass.) continued their strong play at first doubles by earning an 8-3 win over Wesley Esthimer and Mike Zagame. Sean Bleau and Jesse Gotlib won at second flight for Bridgewater, while Nicholas Desisto and Cody Farrell earned the win at third flight.
Moving into singles play, Hernandez continued his dominant play as he swept his first singles opponent with a 6-0, 6-0 decision. From there it was Bridgewater's Mike Zagame who earned the win at second singles to push the Bears lead back to one. Lai earned a hard fought win at third flight with a 7-6 (7-3), 6-1 decision to tie the score at 3-3. The victory also secured a perfect 6-0 record against conference opponents for the Boston native as well.
Unfortunately it was Bridgewater that would take the final three singles matches to earn the victory and the second seed.
Once the tie-breaker has been announced, the Beacons will find out if they will be hosting or on the road in the first round of the tournament which is slated to begin next Tuesday. Bridgewater State and UMass Dartmouth both earned first round byes, with Dartmouth earning the top-seed and the regular season title.
Start time for the quarterfinal round of next week's conference tournament will be announced later this weekend.