April 2, 2006
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Pick a storyline for Florida State’s Sunday afternoon 4-3 victory over No. 4 Duke.
First, the No. 27 Seminoles upset the top-ranked team in the ACC, junior Jonathas Sucupira logged a singles upset over the No. 37-ranked player in the country, the Ytai Abougzir/Chris Westerhof pair upset a higher-ranked doubles team, freshman Chris Cloer was down 5-1 in the second set and rallied for the win, and freshman Maciek Sykut sealed the deal for FSU with a three-set triumph at No. 4 singles.
FSU rolled to its fourth win in five outings as the Seminoles improved to 12-9 overall and 5-2 in league action; the Blue Devils dropped to 12-5, 4-1 ACC and registered its first league loss.
Of the 24 times FSU and Duke have met, the Seminoles won for just the fifth time ever today.
“This is our third top-10 win this year,” an elated Florida State head coach Dwayne Hultquist said. “Duke is clearly the best team we have played. We were a little disappointed on how we played on Friday night and how that turned out. So, I was proud at how our team bounced back. I thought that even in the singles matches we lost today we competed really well. I think this was one of our best overall days of the year.”
Florida State came out dry in doubles action and dropped matches at Nos. 2 and 3 as the Blue Devils took the first team point. However, the Seminoles’ No. 1 pair of Ytai Abougzir and Chris Westerhof, ranked No. 37 in the country, did upset Duke’s No. 29 Jonathan Stokke and Joey Atas by a healthy 8-3 margin.
In singles play, both teams went head-to-head from the start.
FSU evened the score to 1-1 when Westerhof raced away with a 6-3, 6-2 win against Atas at No. 5. A half an hour later, an emotionally-charged Sucupira upset No. 37 Stokke 6-2, 7-6(4) at No. 2 as the Seminoles took the 2-1 lead. Duke answered back (2-2) as No. 62 Peter Rodrigues upended Sam Chang 6-3, 6-4 in the third spot as all eyes settled in on courts 1, 4 and 6.
Sykut and Cloer, two freshmen competing for FSU at No. 4 and 6, once again come through for the home team. The two of them were the only Seminoles to record victories against No. 8 North Carolina last Friday night and they did it once again versus Duke. Sykut took care of Atas (6-3, 3-6, 6-2) and Cloer battled from a 5-1 deficit in the second set to win 6-2, 7-6(5) against Christopher Bao Brown at No. 6.
“Chris was down 5-1 in the second set and he got to where he started punishing the guy,” Hultquist said. “He started to not give any free points away. One of the things that he has really improved on is finishing around the net…that was the difference in the second set and the comeback. As far as Maciek goes, there is so much to say about his competitive nature and ability to rise during certain occasions. He fought hard today and sealed the win for us in the third set. I am very proud of our entire team effort.”
Duke picked up its third point at No. 1 when fifth-ranked Ludovic Walter defeated Abougzir in three sets 4-6, 6-2, 6-2.
Florida State will travel to Virginia Tech and Virginia next Friday and Sunday for 3 and 1pm matches.
April 2, 2006
1. No. 37 Abougzir/Westerhof (FSU) def. No. 29 Atas/Stokke (DU) 8-3
2. Amritraj/Rodrigues (DU) def. Chang/Sucupira (FSU) 8-2
3. Samuelson/Walter (DU) def. Cloer/Sykut (FSU) 8-1
1. No. 5 Ludovic Walter (DU) def. No. 65 Ytai Abougzir 4-6, 6-2, 6-2
2. Jonathas Sucupira (FSU) def. No. 37 Jonathan Stokke (DU) 6-2, 7-6(4)
3. No. 62 Peter Rodrigues(DU) def. Sam Chang (FSU) 6-3, 6-4
4. Maciek Sykut (FSU) vs. Joey Atas (DU) 6-3, 3-6, 6-2
5. Chris Westerhof (FSU) vs. Kiril Dimitrov (DU) 6-3, 6-2
6. Chris Cloer (FSU) vs. Christopher Bao Brown (DU) 6-2, 7-6(5)
Order: 5, 2, 3, 6, 4, 1