ELIZABETHTOWN, Kentucky -- The top seeded Asbury University men's tennis team won the 2017 River States Conference Men's Tennis Tournament title by defeating No. 3 IU Southeast, 5-0, in the championship final on Saturday. The tournament was held April 28-29 at the Freeman Lake Tennis Complex in Elizabethtown, Ky.
Asbury (16-1, 5-0 RSC) earned the conference's automatic qualification to the NAIA Men's Tennis National Championship to be held May 16-20 in Mobile, Ala. The Eagles have been mentioned in the NAIA Top 25 Poll all year and are currently "receiving votes" in the national rankings with the only team loss of the season coming at the hands of a top-10 NAIA team.
It was a matchup of Asbury versus IU Southeast in the finals for the fourth straight year. Whereas IU Southeast won the matchup at this stage last year, it was Asbury that came out on top in 2017. The Eagles won all three doubles matches and then clinched the victory with wins at No. 1 and No. 2 singles.
Asbury's Ty Abraham aand Joshua Abraham won at No. 1 doubles, 8-5, over IU Southeast's Jonathan James and Chris Braun. No. 2 doubles went to Asbury by a score of 9-7 with Joshua Turnquest and Julian Tellez edging Brock Winchell and Garrett Fensler. The Asbury duo of Duece Gibson and Aquille Trotman beat Bryson Mills and Daulton Fensler at No. 3 doubles, 8-1.
No. 1 singles saw Turnquest pick up a convincing and unblemished 6-0, 6-0 victory over Winchell. Josh Abraham won the No. 2 singles match over James, 6-0, 6-2.
IU Southeast (15-11, 3-2 RSC) reached the championship final by opening up on Friday with at 5-0 victory over No. 6 Alice Lloyd (Ky.) in the first round and a 5-0 win over No. 2 IU East in the semifinals. Asbury had a bye in the first round and defeated No. 4 Brescia, 5-0, in the semis.
AU will return to the NAIA National Tournament for the first time since 2015. Stay tuned for more on the team's road to the NAIA National Tournament as the time approaches.