Aztec juniors Arnaud Restifo, Rafael Gonzalez Almazan advance to their respective flight finals
Photo courtesy goaztecs.com
November 3, 2018 (Fresno) - San Diego State juniors Arnaud Restifo (Nice, France) and Rafael Gonzalez Almazan (Madrid, Spain) posted two victories apiece in singles competition on Saturday to lead the Aztec men’s tennis team on the second day of the Bulldog Classic at Spalding G. Wathen Tennis Center.
In Flight A, Restifo overcame a one-set deficit in both of his matches, rallying past San Francisco’s Nitzan Ricklis in the quarterfinals, 4-6, 6-2, 6-1, before pulling away from Patrik Pech of host Fresno State in the semifinals, 6-7(5), 7-5, 6-0.
With his results, Restifo will battle Azusa Pacific’s Jakob Schnaitter in the championship final on Sunday morning. Earlier, Schnaitter eliminated SDSU sophomore Jan Kirchhoff (Berlin, Germany) from the main draw with a 6-4, 6-3 triumph in the quarterfinals before posting a 6-3, 6-2 conquest of Fresno State’s Cem Erturk in the semis.
In Flight B, Gonzalez Almazan also experienced early adversity in his quarterfinal encounter with Nevada’s Delmas N’tcha, but ultimately prevailed in three sets, 4-6, 6-2, 6-4. The native Spaniard kept the momentum rolling in the semifinals against Sonoma State’s Max Nudell, dispatching his Seawolf opponent, 6-2, 6-4, to set up a Sunday showdown with San Francisco’s Phuc Huynh in the title match.
In the Aztecs’ remaining singles match, Nicholas Mitchell (Ojai, Calif.) fell short in the consolation semifinals to another USF foe in David Woodland, dropping a 6-2, 6-4 decision.
However, Mitchell and Kirchhoff were not shut out on Saturday after emerging triumphant in their Flight B doubles semifinal engagement, where they edged the USF tandem of Ricklis and Ryan Marker in a tiebreaker, 8-7(4). With their victory, the Aztec duo will face Azusa Pacific’s Leyton Boren and Ryan Nuno for the crown on Sunday.
Similarly, Restifo and Gonzalez Almazan survived a tiebreaker of their own the consolation semifinals of Flight A, where they defeated the Fresno State pairing of Erturk and Pech, 8-7(3). The Aztec teammates will next tangle with the Nevada combo of Daniel Dudockin and Matvey Radionov in the bracket final on Sunday as well.
Nov. 3, 2018
Spalding G. Wathen Tennis Center
SDSU Results Only
Singles – Flight A
Arnaud Restifo (SDSU) def. Nitzan Ricklis (USF), 4-6, 6-2, 6-1
Jakob Schnaitter (APU) def. Jan Kirchhoff (SDSU), 6-4, 6-3
Arnaud Restifo (SDSU) def. Patrik Pech (FS), 6-7(5), 7-5, 6-0
Singles – Flight B
Rafael Gonzalez Almazan (SDSU) def. Delmas N’tcha (NEV), 4-6, 6-2, 6-4
Rafael Gonzalez Almazan (SDSU) def. Max Nudell (SSU), 6-2, 6-4
Singles – Flight C
David Woodland (USF) def. Nicholas Mitchell (SDSU), 6-2, 6-4
Doubles – Flight A
Rafael Gonzalez Almazan/Arnaud Restifo (SDSU) def. Cem Erturk/Patrik Pech (FS), 8-7(3)
Doubles – Flight B
Jan Kirchhoff/Nicholas Mitchell (SDSU) def. Ryan Marker/Nitzan Ricklis (USF), 8-7(4)