TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – The Florida State men’s tennis team finished play in this weekend’s Four-in-the-Fall tournament hosted by the University of Alabama, capped by the superb play of sophomore Jake Albo.
The Plantation, Fla., native won the Doubles 2 draw on Saturday with playing partner Jose Gracia, going 3-0 in the bracket. Albo also went 3-1 in singles play playing out of the Singles 2 draw, his only loss coming against the No. 48-ranked player in the nation, Becker O’Shaughnessey of Alabama. He rebounded from that loss to win his final two matches of the weekend, including Sunday’s 6-2, 6-1 victory over Gian Issa of Middle Tennessee State.
“Jake is a bright spot for us,” head coach Dwayne Hultquist said. “Going 6-1 overall is a big deal, and his only loss was to a Top 50 player in the country. He was able to show the consistency over the past three days that we really sought going into this season and we look for him to keep it up moving forward and into the spring season.”
Gracia, a redshirt freshman that lost time last season due to injury, continued to improve upon his return to the court. In addition to winning the doubles draw with Albo, he won the first two matches in singles competition on Saturday before falling to O’Shaughnessey on Sunday, 4-6, 6-4, 6-2. In all, Gracia finished the Crimson Tide tournament with a 5-2 record over singles and doubles play.
Sunday’s final result saw Stuart Kenyon of Alabama defeat Joao Gauer, 6-4, 6-4. After going 2-1 in doubles play with Jack Haffey, who had to pull out of the tournament after a Saturday illness, Gauer came up short in four singles matches and finished the weekend with a 2-5 record.
“Our doubles play was a huge revelation for us,” Hultquist said. “Both duos played really well, really strong tennis. The energy that Jose and Jake brought in their three matches was a big deal. Jack played well until his illness caught up with him on Saturday, but he was another positive part of our team this weekend.”
Jake Albo (FSU) def. Gian Issa (Middle Tennessee State), 6-2, 6-1
Becker O’Shaughnessey (Alabama) def. Jose Gracia (FSU), 4-6, 6-4, 6-2
Stuart Kenyon (Alabama) def. Joao Gauer (FSU), 6-4, 6-4
ITA All-American Championships Kick Off This Week in Tulsa
Three Seminoles will take place in the ITA All-American Championships this week in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Florida State will open play in the qualifying draw Monday morning at 10 a.m. as Benjamin Lock, ranked No. 79 in the country, takes on Eric Perez of LSU. No. 103 Cristian Gonzalez Mendez takes on No. 98 Dominik Koepfer of Tulane at 12 p.m., and Marco Nunez takes on Alejandro Augusto of Clemson at 2:30 p.m. The ITA All-American Championships in Tulsa will be hosted at the Michael D. Case Tennis Center on hard court surfaces.
“We view the ITA All-American Championship as the biggest event of the fall,” Hultquist said. “Everyone in the country is here. We are very fortunate to have three singles and one doubles entry in the qualifying draw. Every player here is good and our guys are looking forward to playing against the best competition they will see during the fall.”
About the Saint Francis Health System ITA Men’s All-American Championships
The first major championship of the fall collegiate season for the men has been hosted by the University of Tulsa at the Michael D. Case Tennis Center since 2005. Since 1979, this event has successfully combined competitors who had stellar seasons the year before with the cream of the crop from the freshman class.