UGA's Nathan Pasha falls on 'College Night'

By Rick Limpert, Special to BB&T Atlanta Open


The folks in this part of the country may be biased, but if you ask the locals, they will tell you that there is no better college town in America than Athens, Georgia.

For a pure college town experience, it's hard to beat the University of Georgia and Athens with it's restaurants, live music venues and that "Southern Hospitality" you would expect in Georgia. 

It's one of the reasons Nathan Pasha picked the University of Georgia to play college tennis. 

EF9G5833Lukas Lacko earns first main draw win in Atlanta since 2010 Tuesday night. (Bill Kallenberg/ BB&T Atlanta Open) 

One of the perks of being a top player on the UGA tennis team is a chance to play in either the qualifying or main draw of the BB&T Atlanta Open.

Atlanta-native Pasha took to the Stadium Court on Tuesday for "College Night" and while he came up a little short in his ATP main draw debut against Lukas Lacko of Slovakia, he made the most of the opportunity.

"The experience was great," Pasha said to media after the match. "I'd like to thank the tournament director for giving me the opportunity. Obviously I would've liked to have served it out."

In front of family and friends, and Georgia legend, Herschel Walker, the 2013 NCAA All-American did have a chance to serve out the second set, but ultimately fell 6-2, 7-5 in a hard fought match.

Pasha hit a 136 mph ace, running forehand winners and even handled Lacko's first serve like a pro.

What Pasha still lacks at his young age is a little experience and that second gear a seasoned professional like Lacko can shift into when needed.  

Pasha admitted he "freaked out" and a player with more experience doesn't do that.

"It's so mental. I feel guys that aren't as experienced just freak out, and I guess I'll just try to learn from this."

Atlanta tennis fans were treated with some great doubles play to end the night featuring the reigning Wimbledon doubles champions, Jack Sock and Vasek Pospisil.

There is no town that enjoys quality doubles play more than Atlanta and Sock and Pospisil didn’t disappoint. They cruised to a 6-4, 6-4 victory over the Colombian pair of Alejandro Gonzalez and Juan-Carlos Spir.