May 29, 2011
Stanford, Calif. – Facing another familiar opponent Sunday in the semifinals of the NCAA Doubles Championship, Georgia Tech’s Kevin King and Juan Spir saw their season come to an end with a 6-4, 7-6 loss to fourth-seeded Jeff Dadamo and Austin Krajicek of Texas A&M.
The Tech duo, which had knocked off the championship’s top seed Friday and the seventh seed Saturday, completed the deepest run by a Yellow Jackets’ doubles team ever, matching the effort by Walter Johnson and Paul Speicher in 1966. That performance combined with teammate Guillermo Gomez’ run to the round of 16 in singles and Tech’s run to the round of 16 in the team championship made this one of the best years in the history of the men’s tennis program.
“Full credit goes to Texas A&M,” said Tech coach Kenny Thorne. “They played extremely well and we just couldn’t quite steal the momentum away. Our guys fought like champions and represented Georgia Tech extremely well. They will hold their heads high leaving here. I’m proud of our Yellow Jackets!!”
King and Spir were not able to extend the Aggie tandem in the same way they did in the semifinals of the USTA/ITA National Collegiate Indoors in the fall, a match which went three sets, two decided by tiebreaker. After Dadamo and Krajicek won the first set, the Yellow Jackets engaged them in a back-and-forth affair in the second set and the tiebreaker (9-7) that ultimately decided the match.
“Today was a tough match. We came out and played aggressively,” said King, a junior from Peachtree City, Ga. “Texas A&M is a very good team and played very well today. They took the first set, but we kept playing solidly and kept putting pressure on them. It came down to a tiebreaker and could have gone either way. They were able to play well though and come away with the win.”
“I was surprised the match started with two breaks but after that Texas A&M played solid,” said Thorne. “They served very well with the lead and all the way until they served for the match. We got some looks at second serves and hit some good returns and broke. Both teams served well in the tiebreaker and we just couldn’t seem to break away from them. Kevin and Juan almost pulled out the second set, and then things would have gotten very interesting.”
King and Spir finished the season at 35-11, and each player broke the previous Tech record for doubles wins in one year (30). They were 11-5 against ranked teams this year, won the Southern Intercollegiate Championship and reached the semifinals of the two biggest collegiate events.