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    SEC Saturday Tennis Report

    Florida Passes Road Test With Win Over Florida State

    The Florida men’s tennis team stayed unbeaten on the season, winning its first road match of the year by beating Florida State, 5-2, on Saturday afternoon in Tallahassee.
     
    “Overall, I think it was a good day,” said head coach Bryan Shelton. “We came on the road and we knew it was going to be tough test and our guys answered the call.”
     
    The Gators improved to 6-0 on the season and will travel to Seattle later this week to play in the 2013 ITA National Indoors against some of the nation’s top teams. Florida State, ranked No. 28 in the latest poll, falls to 9-2.
     
    Florida got off to a good start by taking the doubles point against the Seminoles, something none of FSU’s first 10 opponents had managed. Stephane Piro and Bob van Overbeek started with an 8-3 win over Dominic Controne and Michael Rinaldi on court three, and No. 45 Florent Diep and Michael Alford clinched the point with an 8-3 win over Jordan Kelly-Houston and Anderson Reed, 8-3, on court two.
     
    “I was really proud of our team and the way they came out and competed from the first point in doubles,” said Coach Shelton. “We really never let them have a chance to get into the doubles matches and I felt like we did a good job on all three courts. We were pretty decisive in the way that we played, and as the matches went along we seemed to get better and better.”
     
    UF’s Billy Federhofer and Gordon Watson led 7-4 over FSU’s Andres Bucaro and Benjamin Lock, ranked 27th as a pair, when play was halted.
     
    “We’ve worked really hard on our doubles game and we’re making improvements,” said Shelton. “We’ve just got to continue to do that. Overall today with the doubles, I thought that we did a really good job of coming out with great energy. One of our goals was to keep their crowd quiet and I thought our guys did a great job of that.”
     
    In singles, the Gators kept the momentum going with five first-set wins. Piro was the first to get off the court, beating Lock, 6-4, 6-2, at No. 3 singles. Watson finished right after Piro to give Florida a 3-0 lead, beating Reed, 6-2, 6-4, on court four.
     
    “Steph got the first point for us in singles pretty decisively,” said Shelton. “He got better as the match went along and really used his whole game and got to the net a lot today and was able to execute. I was proud that he played more disciplined tennis today and executed well and got off the court.
     
    “Gordon came out and played really well in the doubles from the very first point. In singles play, he did a nice job of jumping on [Reed] early. He had a little bit of a hiccup in the second set, but was able to gather himself and finish that match off. I was pleased that Gordon was able to take a deep breath when the guy made a charge in the second set and was able to gather himself and really finish the guy off by playing good, solid, aggressive tennis.”
     
    Alford, playing at No. 5 singles, clinched the team victory for UF. After a tight first set, which Alford won, 7-5, he cruised in the second by a 6-1 margin.
     
    “[Bucaro] made Mike feel uncomfortable out there in the beginning,” Shelton said. “[Bucaro] is a little bit of an unorthodox player who does a lot of different things out there on the court. It took Mike a little while to adjust and find his rhythm, but once he found it, he never looked back and kind of steamrolled the guy after that first set. Really pleased to see him out there competing and you always know what you’re going to get from him, which is going to be a solid effort. It was great to see him close that match out and clinch the win for us today.”
     
    Rounding out the scores, van Overbeek lost at No. 1 singles, 6-2, 6-4, to Cotrone, while Diep beat Kelly-Houston, 7-6(4), 6-4, at No. 2 singles. At the sixth position, Federhofer dropped a third-set tiebreak to Blake Davis, losing 2-6, 7-5, 1-0 (10-5).
     
    Florida’s will head to Seattle, Wash., this week to take part in the 2013 ITA National Indoors, beginning Friday. The event is hosted by the University of Washington at the Nordstrom Tennis Center and Seattle Tennis Club.



    Kentucky Women Fall to Tulane

    LEXINGTON, Ky. – The University of Kentucky women’s tennis team dropped its second consecutive match on Sunday, dropping a 6-1 decision to No. 59 Tulane on Saturday at the City Park Pepsi Center in New Orleans.
     
    Tulane opened the morning by clinching the doubles point in two matches. Jenny Hois and Emma Levy of Tulane were the first to take a match, defeating Cece Witten and Edmée Morin-Kougoucheff 8-3 in the No. 2 doubles slot.
     
    The doubles point was decided in the No. 3 slot as Tulane’s Caroline Magnusson and Hila Elster won the tiebreaker 8-7 (5) over Stephanie Fox and Jessica Stiles.
     
    Stiles dropped the No. 2 doubles point to Levy 6-1, 6-0 before freshman Nadia Ravita lost her first singles match of the year, 6-0, 6-4 to Klara Vyskocilova. Ipek Birol clinched the match for Tulane, taking the fourth singles point 6-4, 6-3 over Caitlin McGraw to give the Green Wave its fourth point of the day.
     
    With the match clinched, play continued as freshman Kirsten Lewis notched the Wildcats’ lone point of the day, defeating Caroline Magnusson 0-6, 7-6, 1-0 (8).
     
    Hois defeated Morin-Kougoucheff 6-3, 6-7 (7), 1-0 (8) in the No. 3 singles match. Elster handed Fox her first singles loss of the year 3-6, 7-5, 1-0 (6).
     
    The Wildcats will return to action Tuesday when they travel to Columbus, Ohio, to face Ohio State at 4 p.m. ET.



    Auburn Ladies Win Doubleheader, Move to 5-1



    AUBURN – Auburn women’s tennis improved to 5-1 on the season defeating No. 62 Georgia State 6-1 for its second ranked win of the year and Samford 4-0 in a doubleheader at the Yarbrough Tennis Center.
     
    “Today was a very grueling day, but we knew it would be,” Auburn women’s tennis head coach Lauren Longbotham Meisner said. “I’m glad that the team stepped up and accepted the challenge they were handed. It was a complete team effort with the entire team playing today. We need to continue to improve and have another chance to do that on Wednesday.”
     
    Auburn utilized its team depth on Saturday playing a total of nine players in the two matches.
     
    The highlight of singles play for No. 68 Auburn (5-1) came when freshman Pleun Burgmans defeated ITA No. 29 Abigail Tere-Apisah 6-1, 6-0 at the top spot.
     
    “The win for Pleun was big,” Meisner said. “It helps her confidence. It shows her how good of player she can be. As a freshman, she is still trying to figure out college tennis. For her to not only win, but do so against a nationally-ranked player in that fashion shows us what she is capable of.”
     
    The Tigers opened the match with Jen Pfeifler and Paulina Schippers beating Georgia State’s Jocelyn Ffriend and Linn Timmerman 8-3 on court three. The duo of Jackie Kasler and Emily Flickinger continued their spring success with a win over Whitney Byrd and Maryna Kozachenko 8-4 to clinch the doubles point at the No. 2 position, and move to 4-0 for the season.
     
    Kasler maintained her momentum from doubles into singles play defeating Linn Timmerman 7-6, 6-4 on court four. Flickinger clinched the win for the Tigers with a 6-3, 6-3 victory over Whitney Byrd at the No. 3 position. 
     
    Auburn came back in the evening to post a dominant 4-0 win over Samford.
     
    In doubles action, Kurteva and Paulina Schippers started off the night with an 8-0 triumph over Emily Mallory and AnnMarie Lyon on court three. Kasler and Jen Pfeifler clinched the doubles point by defeating Adri Lochner and Carita Moolman 8-5 at the No. 2 position.
     
    In singles, Maria Cardenas Conti earned a 6-1, 6-0 victory over Sarah Gail Nieburon court six. Also earning a victory was Pfeifler, who defeated Moolman 6-1, 6-0 at the No. 3 position. 
     
    The senior Schippers clinched the win for the Tigers with a 6-0, 6-2 victory over Adri Lochner on court five.
     
    Auburn will return to action Wednesday, Feb. 13, with a doubleheader home match against Alabama State at 10 a.m. CT and Troy at 6 p.m. at the Yarbrough Tennis Center. Admission is free.
     
    For the latest on Auburn women's tennis follow @AUWomensTennis on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook at www.facebook.com/AUWomensTennis.



    Auburn Men Take Down San Diego State



    FRESNO, Calif. - Auburn's 22nd-ranked men's tennis team got its West Coast swing off to a good start Saturday afternoon with a 6-1 win over No. 66 San Diego State at Fresno State's Wathen Tennis Center.
     
    The Tigers (6-1) earned their second win in three tries this season over a nationally ranked opponent and will face Fresno State at 2 p.m. CT Sunday to conclude a five-match road trip.
     
    "We played solid tennis today," Auburn head coach Eric Shore said. "Hopefully we can continue that tomorrow. We talked about trying to get the job done this weekend, looking at two matches instead of one. We're halfway home and we have to finish the job tomorrow.
     
    "Our number one doubles team continues to do their job; everybody they play is very fired up to play them. Our freshman, Joseph Van Dooren, keeps getting better. He's got a ways to go, but he's starting to play a little better, and that's encouraging. Our depth helps, with Michael Wardell playing well at (number) six today; that helped a lot. And Dennis Lengsfeld really stepped up and played well today at number three."
     
    Auburn made it 7-for-7 in claiming the doubles point this year as they took an early 1-0 lead on the Aztecs. The nation's second-ranked duo of senior Andreas Mies and junior Daniel Cochrane claimed a 7-4 win at the No. 1 spot as the team of Bertsch and Nicholas retired. And the Tigers clinched the point as Dennis Lengsfeld and Lucas Lopasso earned an 8-6 win over SDSU's Derek Siddiqui and Andranik Kachatryan. 
     
    The Tigers then kept rolling with wins in five of six singles matches. Wardell remained unbeaten on the season at 5-0 with a 6-1, 6-2 win at the No. 6 spot over Shiva Sangwar Lengsfeld claimed a 6-2, 6-1 win over Kachatryan at the No. 3 spot, and Joseph Van Dooren took a 6-3, 6-2 win at the No. 5 spot over Spencer Simon to clinch the match at 4-0.
     
    Mies, ranked No. 74 in the ITA singles rankings, won in straight sets over Thorstan Bertsch, 6-3, 6-1 to give Auburn a 5-0 lead. The Aztecs got on the board at the No. 2 position as Derek Siddiqui posted a 6-4, 6-2 win over Cochrane, and Lopasso closed it out for Auburn in a match tiebreak with a 6-2, 1-6, 1-0 (10-5) over Juan Florez.
     
    Sunday's match with Fresno State is set for a 2 p.m. CT start. Live results will be available at GoBulldogs.com.



    UGA Bears Down, Beats Cal

    CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA.----Sixth-ranked Georgia advanced to the semifinals of the ITA National Team Indoors with a 4-1 win over seventh-ranked California Saturday.
     
    Up next, the Bulldogs (4-0) face top seed and defending tournament champion UCLA as the Bruins edged Miami (Fla.) 4-2 in their quarterfinal match at the Boar's Head Sports Club. The semifinal match begins at noon.
     
    Georgia captured the doubles point and then picked up singles wins from a trio of freshmen in Silvia Garcia, Mia King and Makenzie Craft to register its latest victory over the Golden Bears.
     
    "We played absolutely fantastic in doubles and that set the tone for the rest of the match," said Georgia coach Jeff Wallace. "We had good energy from start to finish. Our three freshmen came up big in singles and the other three Bulldogs in the lineup played pretty well too. Overall, this was a great match for us and we're looking forward to another opportunity Sunday."
     
    Georgia's doubles wins came at the No. 1 and 3 spots in the lineup. The team of Garcia and Kate Fuller posted an 8-2 victory over Zsofi Susanyi and Klara Fabikova at No. 1 to clinch the first team point. Georgia's No. 3 team of King and Lauren Herring cruised to an 8-1 win over Cecila Estlander and Kelly Chui.
     
    In singles, seventh-ranked Susanyi evened the match with a 6-0,6-4 win over 18th-ranked Maho Kowase at No. 1. The Bulldogs went up 2-1 after Garcia defeated Lynn Chi  6-4,6-2 at No. 3. Then, Craft crushed Chui 6-0,6-1 at No. 6 for a 3-1 advantage.
     
    King provided the match-clinching point with a 6-4,6-1 decision over Tayler Davis in the No. 5 contest. She is 6-1 as a Bulldog. Herring and Fuller did not finish their singles matches with the team outcome decided.
     
    This is the 23rd appearance for the Bulldogs at the National Team Indoors. Georgia is 49-19 all-time including winning the title three times, most recently in 2002.