ASU Tennis: Alabama State performs well at Mercer Gridiron Classic

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MACON, Ga. | Alabama State tennis teams had a strong showing in the Mercer Gridiron Classic hosted at the John Drew Smith Tennis Center and Randy Stephens Tennis Center over the weekend.

In their first fall tournament of the year, Alabama State took home wins in the event amongst over 200 players from 31 different schools.

Sophomore Sahra Bouchaala (Aix-en-Provence, France) performed well in her Hornet debut, winning the A-2 flight at the tournament. The transfer from the University of Indianapolis won her first match against Florida Southern’s Minnie Kim 6-2, 6-3, defeated ETSU’s Alejandra Morales 6-3, 6-3 in her second round, while also taking down INC Charlotte’s Kaavya Sawhney 6-1, 6-0 and UAB’s Adela Wasserbauerova 6-4, 1-6, 6-2 in the third and fourth rounds to take home the win.

Bouchala also chipped in with doubles, winning three of her four doubles with junior Francesca Duca (Ploiesti, Romania) to win the back draw.

Junior Bea Acena (Dubai, United Arab Emirates) won three of her singles matches to take home

fifth place in the C-2 draw, beating Kennesaw’s Sofia Pinedo 6-4 and 7-6 in her final match.
Acena was paired with senior Urska Velec (Maribor, Slovenia) in doubles play, winning two of four matches they played.

On the men’s side, junior Juan Rodriguez (Concordia, Argentina) took a win in singles against Georgia College (6-4 / 5-7 / 6-1) before falling to Jacksonville State (6-7 / 2-6), Troy (3-6 / 6-7) and North Georgia (3-6 / 1-6), while David Jeanne Grandinot (Lisieux, France) split two singles matches with a win over Jacksonville State (6-2 / 7-5) and a loss against Georgia Southern (6-4 / 2-6 / 7-5).

Sophomore Kristofer Johnson (Bromley, United Kingdom) took a quarterfinal win over Savannah College in singles in three sets (3-6 / 6-1 / 7-6) however, fell in the semifinal round to North Georgia.

The pairing of Johnson and Grandinot fell in the first round of doubles to Jacksonville State by a score of 6-3.

Freshman Matis Amier (Epernay, France) also made his Alabama State debut with wins in singles against Kennesaw State 6-4 and 6-2 but lost to Troy by scores of 6-0 and 6-2.

Junior Samrakshyak Bajracharya (Katmandu, Nepal) won his first round match against Georgia Southern by scores of 7-5 and 7-5 and lost to Troy in the quarterfinals 6-7 and 3-6. Bajracharya took his final two matches against North Georgia by scores of 5-7, 6-2, 11-9 and took a backdraw win in the final match against Troy by scores of 6-4 and 6-1.

Reigning SWAC Player of the Year Ruan Du Preez (Cape Town, South Africa) fell in singles matchups against Florida Atlantic (4-6 / 4-6), the Citadel (4-6 / 1-6) and Point University (2-6 / 7-6 / 9-11) however took home a win against AUM (7-6 / 2-6 / 10-4). Du Preez went 1-3 in doubles play, falling to Georgia State, North Georgia, and Mercer before defeating AUM.

Graduate student Chris Andre (Berlin, Germany) took home a win in the first round of singles over Georgia College 7-6 and 6-2 but fell in the quarterfinals against Georgia State 6-1 and 3-6. After a walkover match against Jacksonville State, Andre lost in his final game against Florida Atlantic 5-7 and 3-6.

Andre was paired with Rodriguez in doubles play, taking a quarterfinals match against Georgia State 6-4, followed by a 6-2 win in the semifinals against Georgia College to advance to ultimately take the final round against North Georgia with a 6-3 win.


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