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MELBOURNE, Fla. – Despite a 2-0 day from sophomore Frank Vega (Lima, Peru), the Merrimack College men’s tennis team lost in its final game of four in Florida, 6-3, against the Florida Institute of Technology from Fee Avenue Park.

The Basics
Score:
 Florida Tech 6, Merrimack 3
Records: Merrimack (3-6)
 | Florida Tech (11-6)
Location:
 Fee Avenue Park | Melbourne, Fla.

How It Happened
The Warriors faced another regionally ranked opponent in their final contest in Florida, as the Panthers entered Wednesday as the ninth-ranked team in the South Region, according to the Oracle/ITA Division II Rankings.

For the first time during their Florida trip, the Navy and Gold took a lead until singles play. Senior captain Miguel Belfort(Caracas, Venezuela) and Vega returned as a combination at second doubles, and pulled out an 8-6 victory. Junior captain Nick Majewski (Brewster, Mass.) and freshman Tyler Clontz (Naples, Fla.) played together as a unit for the first time this spring, defeating their opponents by an 8-5 final.

As he did against Florida Southern on Tuesday, Vega won the Warriors’ lone singles match of the day. He took the first set by two games, 6-4, before dropping the middle frame. He roared back in the closely contested third set to take the match, 7-5.

The remaining five singles decisions all went in favor of the Panthers. Laurence Akwei (Johannesburg, South Africa) took his second set to a 12th game at fifth singles before falling, 7-5. Freshman Alex Slobin (Fairfield, Conn.) competed at No. 6 after not playing in the doubles portion of the contest.

Results
Doubles
1. Ricardo Corona / JJ Clark (FIT) def. Mikhail Belov / Laurence Akwei (MER) 8-6
2. Frank Vega / Miguel Belfort (MER) def. Aria Canadell / Tjimon Louisy (FIT) 8-6
3. Nick Majewski / Tyler Clontz (MER) def. Wade Ball / Majed Alshaikh (FIT) 8-5

Singles
1. Aria Canadell (FIT) def. Mikhail Belov (MER) 6-3, 6-1
2. Ricardo Corona (FIT) def. Nick Majewski (MER) 6-2, 6-0
3. Frank Vega (MER) def. Majed Alshaikh (FIT) 6-4, 2-6, 7-5
4. Gerard Carpinell (FIT) def. Miguel Belfort (MER) 6-4, 6-2
5. Wade Ball (FIT) def. Laurence Akwei (MER) 6-4, 7-5
6. Foresight Okungbowa (FIT) def.  Alex Slobin (MER) 6-2, 6-0

Up Next
The Warriors return to New England and head to Storrs, Conn. on Saturday for a matchup with Division I UConn at 11 a.m.

Mike McMahon is in his 12th year covering Merrimack College for The Eagle Tribune and is the founder and managing editor of The Mack Report. Mike also serves on staff as a senior writer at College Hockey News. Follow him on Twitter @MikeMcMahonCHN

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