March 22, 2012
ATLANTA – Looking to build momentum following its shutout of Miami 12 days ago, Georgia Tech hosts Boston College and Maryland in a pair of Atlantic Coast Conference matches this weekend at the Bill Moore Tennis Center. Admission is free and parking is available along Fowler Street.
The Yellow Jackets (6-7, 1-2 ACC) earned their first ACC win of the spring with a 7-0 skunking of Miami on March 13, shaking off losses to Florida State and Clemson in the previous week. The Eagles (3-5, 0-3 ACC) have picked up just one point in losses to North Carolina, Maryland and Virginia in conference play, and play a match against Harvard Wednesday before coming to Atlanta. The Terrapins (4-7, 1-2 ACC) dropped conference matches to Virginia and Virginia Tech before picking up the win against BC last weekend. They visit Clemson Friday before coming to Atlanta.
The Yellow Jackets are conducting a fund-raiser during Sunday’s match for honorary teammate Nolan Blake, who is battling anaplastic medullablastoma, a form of cancer. Friends of the program are conducting a bake sale, which will raise money directly for his family to be able to help with costs associated with his treatment.
“We have had a good opportunity to practice hard this week during spring `break,'” said head coach Kenny Thorne. ” I feel we needed this time to focus on tennis specifically and it was nice not having to worry about classes. Boston College and Maryland are two important matches for us. We only have two more home matches after this weekend so we need to take full advantage of home court advantage.
“Both teams will be tough so we are going to have to continue to have all guys ready to embrace the moment. We need to gain some momentum this season and we will have two tough teams to try to make that happen. “
Thorne has a solid 1-2 combination at the top of Tech’s singles lineup in All-American Kevin King, the nation’s 13th-ranked player in singles, and Juan Spir, ranked No. 101. King, a senior from Peachtree City, Ga., has played very well this spring at the top singles position in the Tech lineup, building an 11-2 record with his only losses coming to the nation’s 2nd and 10th-ranked players. Spir, a junior from Medellin, Colombia, has an 8-5 mark this spring.
In the Miami match, Thorne switched Juan Melian, who had played No. 3, and Dusan Miljevic, who had held down the No. 4 spot, and both players won after having struggled in Tech’s first two conference matches. Melian, a junior from Las Palmas, Spain, is 8-5 this spring, while Miljevic, a senior from Novi Sad, Serbia, is 4-7.
Thorne also has made moves to solidify the bottom of the Yellow Jackets’ singles order, and has gotten a boost from freshman Sebastian Lopez of Medellin, Colombia, who enrolled at Tech for spring semester and has gone 5-2 mark at the No. 6 position. Another freshman, Eduardo Segura from Madrid, Spain, is 6-6 overall, playing his last eight matches at No. 5.
Tech has swept all three doubles matches in each of its last two outings. King and Spir, the nation’s No. 2-ranked doubles team, has lost just once this spring, to Wisconsin, and are 11-1, including a win over Georgia’s top team. Thorne shuffled his No. 2 and 3 teams for the Clemson match, pairing Miljevic and Segura at No. 2 and Lopez and Vikram Hundal at No. 3, producing victories from each in two straight matches.