BATON ROUGE, La. - Freshman Justin Butsch led the LSU men’s tennis team to a 4-3 victory over No. 60 George Washington University with his 6-2, 6-3 victory on court four on Thursday evening at Dub Robinson Stadium.
This clinch marks the first of Butsch’s career, and the win is his fourth consecutive and seventh overall of the dual season.
“I wasn’t really excited that all the pressure got down to Justin in that situation,” said LSU head coach Jeff Brown. “It was great to see Justin come through like that. We’ve had a lot of tough losses, but it’s good to finally get one on the right side against a good team. [GWU] won seven matches in a row and has taken down some ranked teams.”
To begin the match, LSU (8-7, 0-4 SEC) took the doubles point for the first time over a ranked team since Kentucky on Feb. 28. The Tigers jumped out to quick leads on courts one and three, leading 4-1 on both courts. No. 30 Chris Simpson and Boris Arias clinched the doubles point after defeating their third ranked opponent of the season in No. 57 Julius Tverijonas and Francisco Dias, 8-3. Sophomore Tam Trinh and Butsch set up the win with an 8-5 victory on court three over Ulrik Thomsen and Viktor Svensson.
To open up singles, LSU and GWU (8-5) split first sets with LSU winning the first sets on courts four through six and GWU winning the first sets on courts one through three.
Trinh quickly gave LSU a 2-0 lead in the match after dominating Ulrik Thompsen 6-1-, 6-0 on court five. Shortly after, sophomore Andrew Korinek fell 6-3, 6-4 on court two, which allowed GWU to cut the lead to one. Korinek fell quickly in the first set, but was able to keep the match closer in the second.
Sophomore Harrison Kennedy extended the lead to 3-1 for LSU with a 6-4, 6-1 win on court six. This win for Kennedy is his ninth of the dual season and his sixth consecutive. George Washington won simultaneously on courts one and three to tie the match at three. Simpson fell 6-4, 6-4 on court one and Arias fell 6-2, 6-4 on court three.
The Tigers return to action on Sunday for their fifth doubleheader of the season. LSU will host No. 9 Texas A&M and Nicholls. The first match will be against Texas A&M beginning at 1 p.m. on Sunday afternoon.
For up-to-date information and behind the scenes access on the Tigers, fans can follow the LSU men’s tennis team on Twitter and Instagram at @lsutennis and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/lsutennis.
George Washington vs LSU
Mar 12, 2014 at Baton Rouge, La.
(Dub Robinson Stadium)
LSU 4, #60 George Washington 3
1. Francisco Dias (GW) def. #62 Chris Simpson (LSU) 6-4, 6-4
2. Nikita Fomin (GW) def. Andrew Korinek (LSU) 6-3, 6-4
3. Danil Zelenkov (GW) def. Boris Arias (LSU) 6-2, 6-4
4. Justin Butsch (LSU) def. Julius Tverijonas (GW) 6-2, 6-3
5. Tam Trinh (LSU) def. Ulrik Thomsen (GW) 6-1, 6-0
6. Harrison Kennedy (LSU) def. Viktor Svensson (GW) 6-4, 6-1
1. #30 Chris Simpson/Boris Arias (LSU) def. #57 Julius Tverijonas/Francisco Dias (GW) 8-3
2. Nikita Fomin/Danil Zelenkov (GW) def. Andrew Korinek/Eric Perez (LSU) 8-7
3. Tam Trinh/Justin Butsch (LSU) def. Ulrik Thomsen/Viktor Svensson (GW) 8-5
George Washington 8-5; National ranking #60
Order of finish: Doubles (2,3,1); Singles (5,2,6,1,3,4)