Gonzalez Powers No. 14 Kentucky to ITA Indoor Championships

Jan. 31, 2010

Site: Lexington, Ky.
Results: Kentucky 4, Wake Forest 3
Records: Kentucky (4-1, 0-0), Wake Forest (1-1, 0-0)
UK’s Next Match: Saturday, Feb. 6 vs. Virginia, noon; Saturday, Feb. 6 vs. Eastern Kentucky 8 p.m.

LEXINGTON, Ky. -- With Kentucky’s chances to advance to the Intercollegiate Tennis Associations Indoor Championships on the line, UK junior Alberto Gonzalez claimed a stellar come-from-behind victory, clinching the decisive fourth point for Kentucky’s 4-3 victory Sunday at the Hilary J. Boone Tennis Complex.

After losing the first set in a tie breaker, Gonzalez and Wake Forest’s Danny Kreyman batted back-and-forth in the second set with each making big plays to tie the set at four. But in the ninth game of the second set, Gonzalez would set the tone for the rest of the match, winning at deuce to build his momentum. The native of Bradenton, Fla., never trailed in the match again, claiming the next game to win the second set 6-4.

In the third set, Gonzalez dominated, winning the first two games. Kreyman grabbed the third game to make it 2-1, but Gonzalez would answer, holding serve and taking a commanding 3-1 lead. The freshman Kreyman posted his last victory of the match when he won the fifth game and Gonzalez posted three straight points to end the match and claim the clinching victory 6-7 (7-2), 6-4, 6-2.

“We really felt like Alberto Gonzalez stepped up his level of play this weekend posting big wins for us,” UK head coach Dennis Emery said. “It is the best that he has played since he has been at Kentucky. He played with a lot of confidence this weekend against good Michigan and Wake Forest players and, hopefully, he will continue to do that.”

The win for Kentucky (4-1) marks the first time since 2005 that the Wildcats have advanced to the final 16 of the indoors or outdoors championships. Kentucky will travel to Charlottesville, Va., on Feb. 12-15 to play in the final rounds.

“Qualifying for the final 16 of the tournament is a major step forward for us in our non-conference play,” Emery said. “Wake Forest has a very good team and they will probably be a sweet 16 team at the end of the year, so this is a big win for us.”

Kentucky started the match by winning their third consecutive doubles point getting victories at No. 2 and No. 3 doubles. UK senior Alex Lambropoulos and Gonzalez posted an 8-4 victory at No. 2 doubles over Wake’s freshman Zach Leslie and junior Jonathan Wolff before UK’s French connection of Rossi and sophomore Alex Musialek from Dax, France, claimed the doubles point at No. 3 over the Demon Deacons duo of David Hopkins and Carleton, 8-5.

“I am very pleased with the fact that we have won the doubles point in three straight matches because that is a big key for us.Our players are really taking a lot pride in doubles,” Emery said.

Sophomore Eric Quigley posted a big win for the Wildcats Sunday and finished the weekend 3-1, claiming two singles matches at No. 1 singles and one doubles match at No. 1 doubles. The native of Pewee Valley, Ky., played against Wake Forest senior Steven Forman. The two held serve for most of the first set, until Quigley was able to break the hard-hitting Forman and clinch the first set 7-5. Quigley then took control of the second set, winning 6-4.

Rossi also was great for the Wildcats this weekend, winning all four doubles and singles matches. The native of Martigues, France, was brilliant in his win over Leslie Sunday, taking command of the match early by posting a 6-2 victory in the first set. The Frenchman would lose the first two games of the second set, but respond with six straight victories to give Kentucky its third point and win the match in straight sets 6-2, 6-2.

UK will return to action on Saturday when they play host to No. 2 Virginia at noon ET and in-state foe Eastern Kentucky at 8 p.m. ET.

Agate

No. 14 Kentucky 4, No. 16 Wake Forest 3

Singles
No.1 – No. 8 Eric Quigley (UK) def. Steven Forman (WF) 7-5, 6-4
No. 2 – Frank “Tripper” Carleton (WF) def. No. 39 Alex Musialek 6-4, 5-7, 6-4
No. 3 – No. 41 Iain Atkinson (WF) def. Brad Cox (UK) 6-3, 6-3
No. 4 – Jonathan Wolff (WF) def. Graeme Dyce (UK) 6-2, 6-4
No. 5 – Alberto Gonzalez (UK) def. Danny Kreyman (WF) 6-7 (7-2), 6-4, 6-2
No. 6 – Anthony Rossi (UK) def. Zach Leslie (WF) 6-2, 6-2

Order of finish: 3, 1, 4, 6, 2, 5*

Doubles
No. 1 – No. 16 Steven Forman/Iain Atkinson (WF) def. No. 9 Eric Quigley/ Brad Cox 8-5
No. 2 – Alex Lambropoulos/Alberto Gonzalez (UK) def. Zach Leslie/Jonathan Wolff 8-4
No. 3 – Alex Musialek/Anthony Rossi (UK) def. David Hopkins/Frank “Tripper” Carleton 8-5

Order of finish: 1, 2, 3*