Jan. 22, 2012
Knoxville, Tenn. – All-American Kevin King won in both singles and doubles Sunday, but it wasn’t enough to lift Georgia Tech at 13th-ranked Tennessee defeated the No. 15 Yellow Jackets, 5-2, at the Goodfriend Tennis Center.
Tech fell to 1-1 after having defeated Old Dominion on Friday, while the Volunteers improved to 2-1. The Yellow Jackets return to action Sunday, hosting the ITA Kick-Off Weekend at the Bill Moore Tennis Center against Auburn, Illinois and North Carolina.
Tennessee quickly took the doubles point by capturing wins at No. 2 and 3, then rolled through the first four singles matches.
“Tennessee came out and played to win and we came out and played to hope to win,” said Tech coach Kenny Thorne. “Our doubles didn’t match their level from the beginning and we got too far behind. It’s always tough to get players to be poised and comfortable on the road at the beginning of the season, and unfortunately it didn’t happen today. It was a tough loss, but it was a good environment for our guys to experience heading into next weekend’s matches.
King and partner Juan Spir, the nation’s 2nd-ranked duo, kept the Vols from sweeping the doubles by defeating 33rd-ranked Mikelis Libietis and Hunter Reese, 8-7.
Straight-set victories at No. 5 and 2 helped Tennessee clinch the contest. Edward Jones downed Tech freshman Vikram Hundal, 7-6, 6-1, at No. 5, and Rees outlasted Spir at No. 3, 4-6, 6-2, 6-4 to give the Volunteers a 3-0 lead. Brandon Fickey took down Juan Melian, 6-4, 7-6, at No. 2 for the deciding point.
Jarryd Chaplin overcame a first-set loss and made it 5-0 Vols by defeating Tech senior Dusan Miljevic, 4-6, 7-6, 6-3, at No. 4.
King and freshman Eduardo Segura captured points for Tech at No. 1 and 6 singles, winning tiebreakers in the third set. King, ranked 9th in the nation, got by 33rd-ranked Libietis, 7-6, 3-6, 7-6, while Segura won out over Taylor Patrick, 1-6, 6-3, 7-6. Both players improved to 2-0 this spring in singles.
“Kevin and Juan played solid in doubles and fought off Tennessee’s No. 1 team, who was playing well,” said Thorne. “Kevin did a great job in singles fighting his way back for a win after being down two breaks in the third. Juan Melian fought very hard and had a good solid attitude, but couldn’t quite break free. Eddie stayed poised after losing the first set in singles and lifted his game under pressure. We will choose to learn and grow from this loss. It will be a good week of focused practice. We will look forward to two tough matches next weekend.”