WILMINGTON, North Carolina - No. 39 UNCW easily won the doubles point and then tacked on five singles victories to dispatch DePaul, 6-1, in men's tennis action Friday at the UNCW Tennis Complex.
The Seahawks won their second straight match to push their record to 11-4 on the season. The Blue Demons suffered their second consecutive defeat on a spring break tour through the Carolinas and stand 10-10 this spring.
Playing their eighth nationally-ranked opponent of the campaign, the Seahawks started quickly on Friday and remained locked in to improve to 10-1 at home. Overall, UNCW has knocked off five nationally-ranked teams.
"DePaul is a very good team with a number of nationally-ranked wins this year," said UNCW head coach Mait DuBois. "We knew we would need to play well. Our focus has been maintaining our intensity through complete matches and today was the best we have done it this spring."
The No. 3 doubles team of Pedro Mol and Kaue Pereira breezed past DePaul's Matija Palinic and Adam Reinhart, 8-2, to start the rout and 70th-ranked Kosta Blank and Chris Cooprider clinched the point with an 8-1 demolition of Filip Dzanko and George Chanturia.
DuBois added, "Our two captains, Chris Cooprider and Kosta Blank, really stepped up for us today and played complete matches. Between their doubles and singles matches, both lost less than five games the entire day. When they are setting the tone for our team, I know it's going to be a good day."
With the doubles point tucked away, the Seahawks proceeded to win the first four singles matches off the court en route to the easy victory.
Pereira, a newcomer from Santos, Brazil, staked UNCW to a 2-0 lead following a 6-1, 6-1 thumping of Palinic at No. 5 singles and Cooprider hiked the score to 3-0 by crushing Chanturia, 6-0, 6-3 at the No. 2 position. Blank then clinched the match by downing Mathias Hambach, 6-2, 6-2.
Top singles player Rafael Aita of UNCW extended his record to 11-3 with a 7-6 (0), 6-3 decision over DePaul's Filip Dzanko, who had won 15 of his previous 16 matches before Friday's action.
The Seahawks travel up the road to Buies Creek next Wednesday, March 28, to battle state rival Campbell in their next match.