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Sophomore Maxi BranthCourtesy: Photography/JMU Athletics Communications
Branth, Three Doubles Teams Advance to Finals for Men's Tennis at Elon
Courtesy:JMUSports.com Release:10/27/2013
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ELON, N.C., Oct. 26, 2013 - Sophomore Maxi Branth (Stockholm, Sweden/Tullinge Gymnasium) and three doubles teams will compete for titles at the Elon Fall invitational, following a another successful day for the James Madison men's tennis team at the event.

Branth, competing in the A2 Singles Draw, won both of his matches Saturday. He beat Georgia Southern’s Nico Degroof 5-7, 7-6 (3), 6-1 in the quarterfinals, and then won in the semifinals when Tennessee Tech’s Alberto Esteban retired with an injury. Branth, who improved to 8-3 this fall, was on his way to a victory over Esteban anyway, holding a 6-1, 2-0 lead when the match was called.

Branth will play Elon’s Jordan Kaufman in the finals Sunday. Kaufman has yet to lose a set in the tournament, including a win over JMU freshman Brett Moorhead (Midlothian, Va./Cosby) in the semifinals.

Branth will also compete for a doubles title, teaming with freshman Mason Smith (Norfolk, Va./Cape Henry Collegiate) for an 8-6 win in the semifinals. Their championship match will be played at 9 a.m. Sunday.

Joining Branth and Smith in doubles championship matches will be freshmen Alex Berdnikoff (Calgary, Alberta/Edge School for Athletes) and Niels Kathol (Bonn, Germany/Collegium Josephinum Bonn), and sophomore Robert Stirling (Caboolture, Australia/St. Columbans College) and freshman Miljan Ruzic (Sydney, Australia/St. Euphemia College). Berdnikoff and Kathol recorded an easy 8-1 win in the semifinals, while Stirling and Ruzic outlasted their opponents 8-6.

The Dukes continued to add to their win totals at the event. In addition to the players that advanced to the championship round, Stirling and Smith each tallied two wins in singles, while Moorhead and Kathol won one match apiece. Moorhead and freshman Sebastian Salinas (Merida, Mexico/Preparatoria Abierta SEP) will compete for fifth place after winning their lone doubles match of the day.

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