Oct. 17, 2015
Gainesville, Fla. – Casey and Michael Kay stunned the seventh-ranked doubles team in the country, and three Georgia Tech players won in the opening round of the main singles draw Friday and the USTA/ITA Southeast Regional.
SINGLES UPDATE — Three of the five Tech players in the main draw of singles won their opening round matches Friday. Christopher Eubanks, ranked 24th nationally defeated Florida State’s Terrell Whitehurst, while Cole Fiegel took down 59th-ranked Jack Findel-Hawkins of North Florida, and Michael Kay downed No. 111 Ben Wagland of Georgia, all in straight sets.
Those three advance to play in round of 32 matches on Saturday morning, followed by round of 16 matches for the winners. Eubanks meets Reece Acree of Central Florida, while Fiegel and Kay face qualifiers McClain Kessler of Florida and Max Andrews of Miami, respectively.
Of the four Yellow Jackets who attempted to advance out of qualifying Friday morning, only Elijah Melendez was successful, defeating Terrance Whitehurst of Florida State. The Tech sophomore lost in the opening round of the main draw to Florida’s Gordon Watson, ranked No. 108, in straight sets. Melendez and Nathan Rakitt move into the consolation round, where rounds of 32 and 16 matches are scheduled for Saturday.
DOUBLES UPDATE — Casey and Michael Kay pulled off a major upset in the round of 32 with an 8-6 victory over seventh-ranked Benjamin Lock and Marco Nunez. Eubanks and Rakitt also advanced to the round of 16 with and 8-6 victory over Loic Blanco and Laurynas Antropikas of Stetson. Yun and Li lost their opening-round match to Piotr Lomacki and Max Andrews of Miami, 8-2, while Fiegel and Melendez dropped an 8-6 decision to Kennesaw State’s Manuel Castellanos and Simon Pritchard.
HEAD COACH Kenny Thorne SAYS — “We had some solid results today, but still have a lot of work to do. Michael and Casey played the best doubles match I’ve seen this fall. We’re focused on doing the right things under pressure and all through the match in order to give ourselves the best chance to win. Michael did a very good job of playing within himself and had a nice win over a good player from Georgia. Nathan has not had the results he has wanted yet, but is working hard and doing the right things. The wins will come. Chris and Cole had solid straight-set wins today which helps going into a long day tomorrow.”
Singles Qualifying Round of 16
Ignacio Jimenez (Florida Atlantic) def. Daniel Yun, 6-4, 1-6, 6-2
Everth Dzib (South Florida) def. Casey Kay, 6-2, 6-2
Elijah Melendez def. Terrance Whitehurst (Florida State), 7-6, 6-3
Sebastian Acuna (Georgia State) def. Andrew Li, 6-7, 6-4, 6-1
Singles Main Draw Round of 64
Cole Fiegel def. #59 Jack Findel-Hawkins (North Florida), 6-3, 6-4
Loic Blanco (Stetson) def. #101 Nathan Rakitt, 3-6, 6-2, 6-2
#108 Gordon Watson (Florida) def. Elijah Melendez, 6-2, 6-1
#24 Christopher Eubanks def. Terrell Whitehurst (Florida State), 6-4, 6-3
Michael Kay def. #111 Ben Wagland (Georgia), 7-5, 6-3
Doubles Round of 64
Piotr Lomacki/Max Andrews (Miami) def. Daniel Yun/Andrew Li, 8-2
Doubles Round of 32
Casey Kay/Michael Kay def. #7 Benjamin Lock/Marco Nunez (Florida State), 8-6
Christopher Eubanks/Nathan Rakitt def. Loic Blanco/Laurynas Antropikas (Stetson), 8-6
Manuel Castellanos/Simon Pritchard (Kennesaw State) def. Cole Fiegel/Elijah Melendez, 8-6
TOURNAMENT INFORMATION — The Southeast Regional is one of 12 regional events taking place around the country this weekend. The site alternates between venues in each state annually. The Southeast regional gathers 64 of the top collegiate men’s players and 64 of the top doubles teams from Georgia and Florida for the five-day event that concludes with finals in both draws Monday morning.