Posted: March 27, 2007
BETHLEHEM, Pa. – It came down to a third set tiebreaker in the final singles match of the day, and Lehigh junior Brent Herbert overcame severe cramping to defeat Lafayette’s Lee Kojanis 8-6 in the tiebreak to win the match and propel the Mountain Hawks to a 4-3 victory over their archrivals Tuesday afternoon on the Ulrich Varsity Courts. Lehigh erased an early 2-0 deficit to pick up its third straight win over the Leopards, as the Mountain Hawks improve to 2-8 on the season and 1-0 in Patriot League matches.
“He needed to win that match,” said Lehigh head coach Dave Shook, of Herbert, who battled severe cramping in the third set and was unable win the set in regulation by holding serve. “Situations like that are why we work the guys so hard. He owed us after he didn’t get it the first three times, but he got it done and I’ll take it.”
Playing No. 4 singles, Herbert lost the first set 3-6, but won the second set 6-3. In the third set, Herbert had trouble with his serve, giving away several points to double-faults; but he was able to break Kojanis’ serve to help get the set into a tiebreaker.
The Leopards won all three doubles matches to take an early 1-0 lead. Lafayette also took the first singles point when Brett Kraft defeated sophomore Andrew Balshi in straight sets. Lehigh took the next two matches, straight set wins from sophomore Mike Gordon at fifth singles and senior Alfredo Fernandez-Concha at first singles to tie the match at three.
Lafayette (3-6 overall, 1-2 PL) went in front again as Eric Wiley defeated junior John Nespoli in three sets at No. 2 singles, but Lehigh sophomore Jon-Michael Caminiti tied the match at three with a 6-4, 4-6, 6-3 win over Matt McGranaghan at sixth singles and set the stage for Herbert to win the match for the Brown and White.
The Mountain Hawks will return to the court on Saturday morning, when they host Patriot League foe Army. The match is currently scheduled for a 9:00 am start from the Ulrich Varsity Courts.
1. Guarino/Kraft (Lafayette) def. Balshi/Herbert (Lehigh) 9-8 (3)
2. Kojanis/McGranaghan (Lafayette) def. Nespoli/Fernandez-Concha (Lehigh) 8-5
3. Wiley/Benezra (Lafayette) def. Nelson/Gordon (Lehigh) 8-6
1. Alfredo Fernandez-Concha (Lehigh) def. Paul Guarino (Lafayette) 6-4, 7-5
2. Eric Wiley (Lafayette) def. John Nespoli (Lehigh) 6-3, 4-6, 6-2
3. Brett Kraft (Lafayette) def. Andrew Balshi (Lehigh) 6-1, 6-4
4. Brent Herbert (Lehigh) def. Lee Kojanis (Lafayette) 3-6, 6-3, 7-6 (6)
5. Mike Gordon (Lehigh) def. Steven Benezra (Lafayette) 6-2, 6-3
6. Jon-Michael Caminiti (Lehigh) def. Matt McGranaghan (Lafayette) 6-4, 4-6, 6-3