TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The No. 9 Florida State men’s tennis team (22-1, 6-0 ACC) earned their 22nd win of the season with a 6-1 win over No. 38 Louisville (14-5, 4-2 ACC). This win marked the first time under head coach Dwayne Hultquist that the Seminoles have hit the 22-win mark.
“Louisville is a tough team,” said Hultquist. “They are an NCAA tournament team and I thought they competed really hard today. Doubles was important to get and also to get five first sets were really important.”
The day got started as the Noles captured the doubles point for the 16th time this season. Redshirt senior Jose Gracia and sophomore Alex Knaff gave the Garnet and Gold a 1-0 lead in doubles with a dominating 6-1 win on court two. The Cardinals tied it up with a 4-6 win on court one. With the doubles point on the line, the newly formed pair of redshirt senior Lucas Poullain and senior Terrell Whitehurst battled in a back and forth match. The Seminole duo was down 5-4 but came back to win the next three games to help the Seminoles take a 1-0 lead heading into singles.
Coming off a big win from a week ago, freshman Chase Wood was the first to finish with an easy 6-3, 6-1 win on court five. This win gave Florida State a 2-1 lead after losing court one. Junior Aziz Dougaz earned his third ranked win of the season on court two with a 6-0, 3-6, 6-1 win. It was just his sixth time all season playing on court two and his fifth win on that court.
“Aziz jumping to an early lead was important,” said Hultquist. “He got up 4-0 in the third and was in control.”
Up 3-1, sophomore Rana-Roop Singh Bhullar clinched the match for the Noles on court six with a 7-5, 6-3 win. His win made him the tenth and final Seminoles to clinch a match this season.
“I was really proud for Rana to come through and clinch the match for us,” said Hultquist. “It is a great testament to our team to have 10 different guys clinch a match for us this year.”
With the match already in hand, both Poullain and Knaff were battling in third sets. Poullain took the first set 6-4 and then lost the second set 6-4. In the third set 10-point tiebreaker her was back and forth with his opponent before winning the last four games to take the third set 10-6. Knaff was down 2-3 in the third set but tied it up 6-6, forcing a tiebreaker. In the breaker, Knaff took off and won his second match of the season on court four.
The Seminole will be back on the court next weekend as they head on the road to take on both Virginia and Virginia Tech.
“We were extended a little tonight,” said Hultquist. “We have two weekends of road trips and a challenge ahead of us.”
#9 Florida State University 6, #38 Louisville Men’s Tennis 1
Louisville Men’s Tennis 14-5, 4-2 ACC; National ranking #38
Florida State University 22-1, 6-0 ACC; National ranking #9
Order of finish: Doubles (2,1,3); Singles (1,5,2,6,3,4)
Records to Watch:
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