THE FLATS – Georgia Tech men’s tennis wrapped up its annual MLK Invitational against No. 4 Georgia on Monday afternoon.
The Jackets pushed several nationally ranked Bulldogs to three sets in singles play, but was unable to steal any of the matches toward Tech’s favor.
Andrew Li and Elijah Melendez battled in two of the tougher singles matches of the day. Li faced off against No. 30 Jan Zielinski and took the first set 6-4. Zielinski was able to bounce back in the second, taking it 6-3, before the match entered the thrilling third set. Both players battled back and forth before eventually the third wound up at 6-all. Once in the tiebreak, the two traded points all the way to a 4-4 tie before Zielinski was able to create distance and eventually seal the victory, 7-5.
Melendez went down a set early, falling to No. 33 Emil Reinberg, 6-4. The senior bounced back quickly, however, taking the second set handily, 6-1. Battling through the third, neither player wanted to concede anything more than a one-point lead until the final moments. Reinberg took the third set, 7-5, to secure the match.
Michael Kay also fell in a hard-fought tiebreaker, this time at the No. 5. Facing Paul Oosterbaan, Kay rallied back from a 6-3 loss in the first to force a 6-all breaker in the second. Kay unfortunately fell 6-1 to drop the match.
Elsewhere in singles, Chris Yun pushed Robert Loeb to three sets, but ultimately fell, 6-4, 2-6, 6-2. Phillip Gresk went toe-to-toe with No. 12 Wayne Montgomery, but dropped a 6-4, 6-4 decision. Daniel Yun and Brandon Freestone also lost in straight sets, with D. Yun falling to No. 66 Nathan Ponwith (6-1, 6-3) and Freestone to Alex Diaz (6-2, 7-5).
In doubles, the UGA tandem of Zielinski/Loeb downed Kay and Li, 6-0, while Gresk and C. Yun fell to Ponwith and Diaz. In the No. 3 doubles, Melendez and D. Yun dropped a 6-2 decision to Walker Duncan and Montgomery.
Georgia Tech will have a few days off before heading on the road to face Tennessee on Friday, Jan. 19. First serve is scheduled for 7 p.m.