DURHAM, N.C. – Though taking the doubles point to earn an early lead, Elon University men’s tennis fell on the road to Duke 6-1 at Sheffield Indoor Tennis Center.
Elon jumped out to an early 1-0 lead when the Phoenix won the doubles point thanks to wins on Nos. 1 and 3. Felipe Sarrasague and Mario Paccini earned a 6-4 win at No. 1 over Catalin Mateas and Vincent Lin. Neal Port and Salvador Mijares then earned Elon the point when the 42nd-ranked duo in the country topped Jason Lapidus and TJ Pura at No. 3, 7-6 (3).
As the match transitioned to singles, Duke, which received votes in the first ITA rankings of 2017 on Jan. 4, earned straight-set wins on five of the six courts. Paccini put up a strong fight at No. 2 against Robert Levine, but ultimately fell 6-4, 2-6, 6-3. Felipe Osses-Konig also battled Nick Stachowiak through a tough match at No. 5, but ultimately fell 6-4, 7-6 (5).
Continuing the six-match road swing to open the season, Elon returns to action Saturday, Jan. 21, with a neutral match against Monmouth in Raleigh, N.C., before taking on NC State. First serve against Monmouth is set for 1 p.m. and first ball against NC State is scheduled for 4 p.m.