by Kevin Buczek
WILSON, N.C.-Barton College will put its undefeated home record on the line Thursday afternoon when the Bulldogs entertain Guilford College at the Barton Tennis Complex at 3:30 p.m.
Barton College Men's Tennis
The Bulldogs are coming off a 6-3 Conference Carolinas victory over Erskine College last Friday (Feb. 21). Barton boasts a 5-1 overall record and is 5-0 in matches it has hosted (3-0 at the Barton Tennis Complex and 2-0 at the Belmont Farms Racquet Club in Rocky Mo
Barton has led after doubles play in all five of its matches and showcases a 15-3 overall ledger in doubles dual tilts.
Sophomore Rafael Ruiz and freshman Jake McCartney carry a 5-1 mark in the top position. Juniors Max Leppert and Jorge Pradilla follow at 4-2 in the middle draw. Sophomore Nick Genest is a perfect 6-0 at No. 3 doubles going 3-0 with both sophomore Daniel Radu and freshman Yaxi Pintado.
BC has not altered the upper half of its singles lineup yet with Ruiz (4-2), McCartney (4-0) and Leppert (3-1) holding the top three spots in that order. Genest (2-2), Radu (1-1) and Pradilla (0-2) have moved around the lower half of the lineup.
McCartney, who is undefeated in his rookie season, was named Conference Carolinas Men's Tennis Player of the Week on Feb. 19.
The young Bulldogs roster with no seniors will all be playing Guilford for the first time in their careers.
Guilford College Men's Tennis
The Quakers will be playing on the road for the first time this season. Guilford (1-1) – a member of the Old Dominion Athletic Conference of the NCAA Division III ranks – opened its campaign with a pair of home contests defeating Greensboro College, 8-1, and losing to Methodist University, 7-2.
Guilford has 13 players on its roster without a senior. Juniors Turner Votipka (7-8) and Trevor Cox (7-8) return the most singles dual match wins from last year. Votipka is 1-1 this season in GC's top singles slot. Cox also has a 1-1 ledger on the early season.
Classmate Blake Brown is the only undefeated Quaker at 2-0 and he earned ODAC Player of the Week on Monday for his hot start split between fifth and sixth singles.
Guilford has used a couple different tandems in its top two doubles positions and is just 1-3 at those two spots. However, the freshman duo of Levi Bruff and Mason Church have started their collegiate careers 2-0 paired together at No. 3 doubles.