No. 8 Tennessee Tops Tech Men, 4-0

March 3, 2013

THE FLATS – Eighth-ranked Tennessee never allowed host Georgia Tech to seize the momentum, streaking to a 4-0 victory over the host Yellow Jackets at the Ken Byers Tennis Complex.

The Volunteers (13-3 overall) clinched the doubles point despite nail-biters at No. 1 and No. 2. Tennessee’s Edward Jones and John Collins won 8-6 over Tech’s Juan Spir and Garrett Gordan – who played as a duo for the first time this season – at No. 2. At No. 1, Yellow Jackets Nathan Rakitt and Juan Melian trailed 6-5 when the doubles point was clinched.

UT’s Jarryd Chaplin and Brandon Fickey won at No. 3 doubles, 8-2 over Tech’s Colin Edwards and Eduardo Seguara.

“I knew the doubles points would be pretty important,” said Georgia Tech coach Kenny Thorne, who must get his team ready for another match at 6 p.m. against Kennesaw State. “We went down a little quicker than I wanted at 3 (doubles), but fought hard at 1 and 2.”

Georgia Tech slips to 5-6 on the season.

Tech, which has depth issues because of injuries to key players, held its own with the Volunteers in the middle of the singles lineup, but struggled at the top and bottom.

Tennessee’s Mikelis Libietis streaked past Tech’s Juan Spir at No. 1 singles, 6-1, 6-1. Collins beat Tech’s Anish Sharma, 6-1, 6-1, at No. 5, and Taylor Patrick topped Colin Edwards at No. 6, 6-4, 6-1.

Tech’s Melian was tied at No. 2 singles, 6-6, when Tennessee clinched the team victory. Segura at No. 3 and Rakitt, at No. 4, were both in nail-biters when the match was called.

“Give Tennessee credit,” Thorne said. “They are a very good team. They jumped on us early and did some things to stay on us.

“We had too many unforced errors, too many double faults. We handed them some breaks, and although dug in and made a comeback, we had dug too big of a hole. We need to eliminate the unforced errors.”

#8 Tennessee 4, #67 Georgia Tech 0
Mar 03, 2013 at Ken Byers Tennis Complex, Atlanta, Ga.

Singles competition
1. #13 Mikelis Libietis (TN) def. #53 Juan Spir (GT) 6-1, 6-1
2. Juan Melian (GT) vs. #33 Hunter Reese (TN) 6-6, unfinished
3. Eduardo Segura (GT) vs. Jarryd Chaplin (TN) 3-6, 3-3, unfinished
4. Nathan Rakitt (GT) vs. Edward Jones (TN) 3-6, 4-2, unfinished
5. John Collins (TN) def. Anish Sharma (GT) 6-1, 6-1
6. Taylor Patrick (TN) def. Colin Edwards (GT) 6-4, 6-1

Doubles competition
1. Nathan Rakitt/Juan Melian (GT) vs. Hunter Reese/Mikelis Libietis (TN) 5-6, unfinished
2. #34 Edward Jones/John Collins (TN) def. Juan Spir/Garrett Gordon (GT) 8-6
3. Jarryd Chaplin/Brandon Fickey (TN) def. Colin Edwards/Eduardo Segura (GT) 8-2

Match Notes:
Tennessee 13-3; National ranking #8
Georgia Tech 5-6; National ranking #67
Order of finish: Doubles (3,2); Singles (1,6,5)
Match played indoors


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