INDIAN WELLS, Calif. – In the 2017 Oracle ITA Fall Championships, which hosts the top singles and doubles players from around the country, the Florida State men’s tennis team went unbeaten in both singles and doubles play on day one. Florida State is one of two schools to have three singles players left in the main draw, and the only school to have three singles players and one doubles team.
Redshirt senior Lucas Poullain got things started for the Garnet and Gold with a win against Ricky Hernandez Tong of New Mexico. Poullain cruised into the second round with a 6-0, 6-1 straight set victory.
“I played well in singles today,” said Poullain. “I don’t like to play against lefties, but I only made a few mistakes and played very solid. He made some mistakes, which really helped me out.”
Sophomore Alex Knaff earned the Noles second landslide victory against Henry Patten of UNC-Ashville. Knaff won 6-3, 6-1.
“Alex won a big match today against the Carolina regional champion,” said head coach Dwayne Hultquist. “He won four deuce points and played really aggressive. Alex was big at the net.”
Senior Guy Iradukunda finished off Florida State’s phenomenal day of singles play with a hard-fought three-set victory. Iradukunda took the first set 6-3 before losing the second set 6-2. Iradukunda took the third set against Eduardo Mena of Tennessee Tech 7-6 (5).
“It was a hot day,” said Iradukunda. “I played well in my first set, but my opponent stepped it up in the second set. It was a close third set, but I was able to be aggressive and take set three.”
“Guy’s win was a good comeback,” said Hultquist. “He did a great job of coming from behind in the third set.”
In doubles the Noles kept it rolling. Third-seeded Poullain and fellow redshirt senior Jose Gracia battled in the first set against Arizona State. After swapping points, the Seminole duo pulled away and took set one 7-5. Poullain and Gracia took the momentum into the second set and dominated the Sun Devils 6-1.
“We had a good start taking a 4-0 lead,” said Poullain. “They came back in the first set to tie it at four. We were able to win a big point at 5-5 that allowed us to win the first set. The second set was a little easier and we were able to win big.”
To keep up with the Seminoles, check Seminoles.com for the latest news and scheduling information, or keep up with the team on social media through Twitter (@FSU_MTennis), Facebook (/FSUMTennis), and Instagram (@FSU_MTennis).
Oracle ITA 2017 Fall Championships Match Results
Lucas Poullain (FSU) def. Ricky Hernandez Ton (UNM) 6-0, 6-1
Alex Knaff (FSU) def. Henry Patten (UNCA) 6-3, 6-1
Guy Iradukunda (FSU) def. Eduardo Mena (TTU) 6-3, 2-6, 7-6 (5)
Poullain/Gracia (FSU) def. Hannestad/Ruehl (ASU) 7-5, 6-1