April 16, 2011

Championship Central


ALEXANDRIA, La. - The SWAC Tennis Tournament semifinal action concluded with in-state rivals Alcorn State (ASU) and Jackson State (JSU) advancing in the men’s bracket.

The Tigers rallied past second-seeded Prairie View A&M for a 4-1 victory in Saturday's semifinal. Jackson State reached the championship finale for the first time under head coach Niji Olagbegi.

JSU jumped to an early lead with the doubles win at No. 1 and No. 3. The Tigers added singles wins with straight-set sweeps from SWAC Player of the Year Vishesh Bhatia (6-4, 6-4) at the No. 1 spot and Jose Luque (7-6, 6-4) at No. 5. Navaneetha Baskaran battled for the 6-3, 1-6, 6-2 win over Kuda Nytatoti at No. 2 singles.

The Braves scored a 4-0 win over fourth-seeded Arkansas-Pine Bluff. Alcorn State is seeking its first conference title since 2009. ASU has won five SWAC men's championships in all.

Alcorn State came out on top in No. 2 and No. 3 doubles, followed by three straight-set wins at singles. Anton Krutkin took No. 1 singles (6-3, 6-3), Winfriend Weinbeer answered with a 6-2, 6-1 win at No. 4 and Yanick Shearron-Hawkins took a 6-0, 6-0 default win at No. 6.

The SWAC Men's Tennis Championship is slated for 1 p.m. on Sunday at Alexandria City Park Tennis Complex.