SCRANTON - Sophomore Tarquin McGurrin (Clarks Summit, Pa./Scranton Prep) and senior Alexander Ochalski (Hopewell, N.J./Hopewell Valley Central) were two-time winners on the afternoon to lead the second-seeded University of Scranton men's tennis team to a 5-0 shutout victory over third-seeded Juniata on Wednesday at Royal Courts in the semifinals of the 2019 Landmark Conference Championships.
With the win, Scranton moved to 11-7 overall for the year and advance onto the Landmark Conference title match on Saturday at top-seeded Goucher, as the Gophers bested Susquehanna in their semifinal match on Tuesday, 5-0.
Juniata ends their season with the defeat, falling to 10-3 overall.
The afternoon got off to a banner start for Scranton in doubles action, as the Royals rode a 3-0 lead into singles with a sweep of all three matches contested.
The first match to finish up was in the first flight, as McGurrin and Ochalski took an 8-4 victory. Then, in the second flight, graduate student Christian Aksu (Exton, Pa./West Chester East) and senior Brian Harkins (New Fairfield, Conn./New Fairfield) pulled away late to take an 8-5 win and give the Royals a 2-0 lead.
Finally, in the third doubles flight, senior Charles Swope (Malvern, Pa./Great Valley) and freshman Christopher Kocon (Mountain Top, Pa./Holy Redeemer) gutted out an 8-7 (7-4) win on a tiebreak to give Scranton the 3-0 lead entering singles.
In singles action, Ochalski made quick work of his match at number two to put Scranton up, 4-0, as he collected a straight-set 6-0, 6-2 win. Then, in the top spot of the line-up, McGurrin finished off the Eagles with a 7-5, 6-0 win, sealing the deal for Scranton in the process.
The Royals will now travel to Goucher for the second straight season in the Landmark Conference championship match, as Scranton looks to win their first Landmark title in program history. Last year, Scranton fell to the Gophers in Towson, 5-2, and lost earlier this season on the road to Goucher, 7-2.
First serve is slated for 1 p.m. in the Landmark title match on Saturday at Goucher. More information on the match will be posted later this week at athletics.scranton.edu.