Feb. 19, 2004
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. –
With the Atlantic Coast Conference portion of the schedule just around the corner, Florida State University men’s tennis coach Dwayne Hultquist wants to know where his team stands. He’ll get a great indication of that this weekend when the Seminoles travel to Lone Star State to take on Rice and TCU. Both teams are ranked in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association’s Top 25.
First up for the Tribe is a Friday (February 20) bout with 23rd ranked Rice in Houston. Then on Sunday the Seminoles will travel to Fort Worth, Texas, to take on the No. 13 Horned Frogs of TCU.
No team in the country may be riding a bigger wave of confidence than Rice. The Owls are coming off back-to-back victories over third-ranked Stanford and No. 11 California. TCU picked up its biggest win of the season when it beat ninth-ranked Texas A&M on Wednesday.
The marquee match up on Friday will be during the doubles’ matches. That is where the No. 15 Florida State team of Chris Westerhof (Durban, South Africa) and Jeff Groslimond (Atlanta, Ga.) take on No. 3 William Barker and Richard Barker from Rice. The singles matches will be just as competitive as three of the Owls’ are ranked by the ITA. At No. 1 Rice is led by 15th-ranked Robert Searle. The Barker boys occupy the No. 22 (William) and 67 positions (Richard).
Just four spots back of the Westerhof-Groslimond tandem is the Horned Frogs’ No. 1 doubles team of Fabrizio Sestini and Rafael Abreu. Topping the TCU singles is Alex Menichini, the 44th-ranked player in the country, while Sestini is 75th.
On Sunday, the Seminole will face a TCU squad that is lead by a head coach who knows what it’s like to wear the Garnet and Gold. Horned Frogs net boss Joey Rive is one the best players in the history of Florida State men’s tennis. Rive was a huge part of the Seminoles’ success in the Metro Conference where he was named league Player of the Year.
A current Seminole just passed Rive on the career combined records list as Mat Cloer (Brevard, N.C.) is continuing his move up several Florida State all-time charts. If the defending Atlantic Coast Conference Player of the Year can combine with Jonathas Sucupira (Sao Paulo, Brazil) to win both matches at No. 2 doubles, he will move into a three-way tie for the FSU doubles record at 52 victories.