April 20, 2012
CARY, N.C. – After losing to Virginia Tech six days ago, the Florida State men’s tennis team revenged the earlier match with a 4-1 win against the No. 4 seed today, Friday, April 20. The No. 5 seed Seminoles are 18-8 on the season now and will face No. 1 seed Virginia tomorrow morning at 10 am at the Cary Tennis Complex.
The Seminoles are playing in their first semifinals since 2009. The team lost to Virginia a week ago 4-3. The semifinal match is scheduled for delayed webcast on theACC.com beginning at 6 pm.
In today’s match, the Seminoles got off to a slow start in doubles put quickly pulled it together by winning the first two matches to clinch the point. On court one, the No. 60 duo of junior Jordan Kelly-Houston and sophomore Blake Davis upset the No. 43 team of Luka Somen and Corrado Degl’Incerti Tocci 8-5 on court one.
“For Jordan and Blake it was probably their best doubles of the year,” said head coach Dwayne Hultquist. “I think the other key is that Anderson and Dominic are now on a streak. They played pretty solid to clinch it 8-4. Last time we lost 4-3 to Virginia Tech and they won doubles. This time we won doubles and I think it was a big part of today’s win.”
In singles play, both teams battled hard with Florida State winning five first sets. Off the courts first was Davis who nabbed a quick 6-3, 6-1 over Patrick Daciek on court two. The match was his 15th win of the spring. Virginia Tech won the next match when No. 56 Luka Somen topped FSU’s Kelly-Houston 6-0, 6-4.
“I was especially pleased with Blake,” said Hultquist. “He really just dominated today and won a big match today to get off the courts quick. Jason was down 5-2 in the first set and comes back to win, of course Cristian being down match points and for him to come back and beat a player who he lost to last week in the third is a great job.”
On court six, senior Jason Zafiros was down 5-2 in the first set and then proceed to win the next 11 of 12 games to win the match. He topped Kujundzic 7-5, 6-1 to make the score 3-1 in Florida State’s favor.
At this point the remaining three matches were all in the third set with all the matches battling back and forth. After winning the first set and losing the second freshman Cristian Gonzalez Mendez battled back and forth Maurico Antun on court five. When that match got to 6-6, the freshman had to play in a tiebreaker. With his teammates rallying behind him he pulled out the win for the 6-3, 0-6, 7-6 (11-9) victory.
“Words can’t even explain how proud I am of Cristian,” said Zafiros. “For him, as a freshman, to be one of the losses last week and play the same guy and go through that adversity in the match today takes a lot of heart and effort. That was one of the most special matches I’ve seen in four years of playing college tennis.”
“Today was a really tough match,” said Gonzalez Mendez. “I was motivated because I lost last week. I tried to do my best and fought every ball down. At the end I got the support from my teammates and overcame the adversity.”
For updates, check back on Seminoles.com. The team is on twitter and can be followed at twitter.com/fsu_mtennis.
No. 5 Seed Florida State 4 v. No. 4 Seed Virginia Tech 1
1) No. 56 Luka Somen (VT) def. Jordan Kelly-Houston (FSU) 6-0, 6-4
2) Blake Davis (FSU) def. Patrick Daciek (VT) 6-3, 6-1
3) Andres Bucaro v. Lucas Oliveira (VT) DNF
4) Benjamin Lock (FSU) v. Corrado Degl’Incerti Tocci (VT) DNF
5) Cristian Gonzalez Mendez (FSU) v. Maurico Antun (VT) 6-3, 0-6, 7-6 (11-9)
6) Jason Zafiros (FSU) def. Trpimir Kujundzic (VT) 7-5, 6-1
Order of finish: 2, 1, 6, 5*
1) No. 60 Kelly-Houston/Davis (FSU) def. No. 43 Somen/Tocci (VT) 8-5
2) Bucaro/Lock (FSU) vs. Daciek/Oliveria (VT) 4-7 DNF
3) Reed/Cotrone (FSU) def. Hunter Koontz/Kujundzic (VT) 8-4
Order of finish: 1, 3