ALTAMONTE SPRINGS, Fla. -- With two wins at doubles versus West Virginia Wesleyan, the Western New Mexico Mustangs needed three points in singles to move out of the Round of 16 of the NCAA Tournament, a spot they haven’t been able to get past the last two years. Emmanuel Mensah, Yair Banuelos and Jean Benoit Belin did just that in quick fashion to clinch the 5-1 victory. 

At No. 2 doubles, Henning Thrien and Banuelos blanked Wesleyan’s Eduard Gusevs and Danilo Franciscon 8-0 to get the Mustangs’ first point. Javier Yim Kim and Rob Hilton knotted the match at 1-1 with an 8-2 victory against Almeida and Belin in the third spot, but Johan Weich and Mensah then took care of things at No. 1 doubles with their 8-4 victory. 

The Mustangs got rolling in the singles portion of the match.

Belin earned WNMU’s first singles point with a 6-1, 6-4 win against Dennis Cole. Mensah collected the second singles point with his 6-3, 6-2 straight-set success versus Marc Rosner. Banuelos was challenged in the first set but came out on top, 7-5, against Alvaro Ochoa. He then cruised to a 6-2 victory to finish the match.

The Mustang win ended WVW's second consecutive appearance in the Round of 16.