No. 6 Kentucky Drops 4-3 Heartbreaker to No. 3 Ohio State
Feb. 18, 2012
LEXINGTON, Ky. - Seniors No. 6 Eric Quigley and No. 20 Alex Musialek each took down a top-16 ranked singles player in straights sets, but No. 3 Ohio State claimed the doubles point and three singles matches, including a three-set thriller at No. 4 singles, to post a closely contested 4-3 win over No. 6 Kentucky on Saturday in the quarterfinals of the International Tennis Association National Men's Indoor Championships.
Kentucky (10-1) will fall into the consolation side of the bracket and will face the loser between No. 2 Virginia and No. 9 Stanford on Sunday at 3:30 p.m. ET. The tournament is being played at the Boar's Head Sports Club in Charlottesville, Va.
"A lot of your momentum for the season comes from what you do in your third match at the ITA Indoors," UK head coach Dennis Emery said. "We have to shake this loss off and get back after it tomorrow against either Virginia or Stanford. We fought hard today. We had to fight from behind for most of the match and to do that and have a chance to win say alot about our team. You just have to give credit to Ohio State for making shots and finishing the match."
With the team score tied 3-3, Ohio State's No. 99 Ille Van Engelen and Kentucky's No. 79 Tom Jomby were battling in a third set at No. 4 singles to see who could earn the decisive fourth point of the match. Van Engelen would start the set with a 3-0 lead, before Jomby won four of the next five games to tie the set 4-4. Both players then held serve to tie the set 5-5 before Van Engelen fought off break point to go up 6-5 and then broke Jomby to clinch the set and OSU's 4-3 win.
"Tom kept his composure today and played a good match, you just have to give credit to their guy for finishing off the match and performing well," Emery said. "Once again, this was a great collegiate tennis match where both teams did good thing, they just did a little more to earn the win."
The Wildcats performed well in singles action overall, getting wins at Nos. 1, 2, and 3 singles. Quigley and Musialek, who are ranked sixth and 20th in singles respectively, led the UK charge in singles. Quigley, who is the school's all-time winningest singles player in school history, posted an impressive 6-4, 6-4 win over No. 16 Chase Buchanan at No. 1 singles. The win is Quigley's 17th over a ranked foe this season and his third in the last four matches that ended in a decision.
Musialek was also strong for the Wildcats, defeating No. 12 Blaz Rola at No. 2 singles in straight sets. The native of Dax, France, is now 18-6 for the year, having taken down five ranked foes this season. Musialek dominated the first set over Rola 6-2 before earning a break and holding serve for most of the second set to post the 6-2, 6-4 win.
Junior No. 13 Anthony Rossi continued his strong season by earning a 6-2, 7-5 win over Peter Kobelt. Rossi is a dominating 8-0 in dual matches this season and 25-2 overall. The native of Marseille, France, is currently ranked 13th in the nation in singles, which is a career-high ranking.
"Overall, I am happy with how we performed in singles," Emery said. "Really proud of how Eric fought off a 4-1 deficit in the second set to beat a quality opponent, that showed great character. Also pleased with the way Musialek jumped out and played a great match against Rola and then Rossi held on in the third set to grab a win. Coach (Cedric) Kauffmann came up with some good plans of attack today and that showed at our top three courts."
Ohio State won its singles matches on courts four, five and six. OSU earned its second and third points of the match when No. 65 Devin McCarthy defeated No. 87 Alejandro Gomez 6-2, 6-4 before No. 107 Connor Smith took down No. 119 Panav Jha 6-4, 6-4. The decisive point of the match was Van Engelen's win over Jomby at No. 4 singles.
In doubles, OSU used wins from its top-two doubles tandems to earn the point. No. 1 Buchanan and Rola defeated No. 48 Quigley and Jha 8-5 before the match was clinched when No. 27 McCarthy and Van Engelen took down Rossi and Jomby 8-6 at No. 2 doubles.
"I thought that we did some good things in doubles and put pressure on them to make some shots and for the most part they did that," Emery said. "They have the top-ranked doubles team in the nation in Buchanan and Rola and then another great duo at two doubles. It was a tough doubles point, but we played well."
The loss to Ohio State (10-0) gives the Buckeyes a 12-11 lead in the all-time series between the two schools. The two teams have met annually since 2009 with the Buckeyes earning 5-2 wins in both 2009 and 2010. Last year, then-No. 12 Kentucky fell in a dual match to third-ranked Ohio State 4-3 in Lexington. The first-ever meeting was in 1933.
Kentucky earned its berth into the event with a victory over No. 22 Tulsa in the ITA Kickoff Weekend. This is the third straight year UK has played in the National Indoor Championships. Last year, UK lost to No. 5 Texas in the opening round before defeating top-15 ranked Texas Tech and top-30 ranked Washington in the consolation bracket. In 2010, Kentucky lost to No. 3 UCLA in the first round before taking down No. 13 Illinois in the second round. UK would finish the event with a loss to top-10 ranked Stanford.
On Tuesday, the ITA announced the latest edition of singles and doubles rankings with UK represented well. Kentucky is one of only two schools in the nation to have six singles players ranked with the other Southern California, who is ranked first in the nation. Three UK players are ranked in the top 20 in the nation in singles, marking the first time in school history the Wildcats have accomplished that feat.
The 2012 ITA National Men's Team Indoor Championship, the signature indoor team tournament of the college tennis season, features 16 of the top men's programs in the nation. Joining UK at the event are each of the top-14 teams in No. 1 USC, No. 2 Virginia, No. 3 Ohio State, No. 4 Georgia, No. 5 Florida, No. 7 Baylor, No. 8 UCLA, No. 9 Stanford, No. 10 Duke, No. 11 Texas A&M, No. 12 Pepperdine, No. 13 California and No. 14 Texas. No. 16 Auburn has the 15th seed in the event, while No. 20 Tennessee is the 16th seed.
For more information on the Kentucky men's tennis team, follow "UKMensTennis" on Twitter or "University of Kentucky men's tennis team" on Facebook.
ITA National Men's Team Indoor Championship Quarterfinals
No. 3 Ohio State 4 vs. No. 6 Kentucky 3
Boar's Head Sports Club - Charlottesville, Va.
Saturday, Feb. 18, 2012
1 - No. 1 Chase Buchanan/Blaz Rola (OSU) def. No. 48 Eric Quigley/Panav Jha (UK) 8-5
2 - No. 27 Devin McCarthy/Ille Van Engelen (OSU) def. Tom Jomby/Anthony Rossi (UK) 8-6
3 - Peter Kobelt/Connor Smith (OSU) vs. Alex Musialek/Alejandro Gomez (UK) 7-4 DNF
1 - No. 6 Eric Quigley (UK) def. No. 16 Chase Buchanan (OSU) 6-4, 6-4
2 - No. 20 Alex Musialek (UK) def. No. 12 Blaz Rola (OSU) 6-2, 6-4
3 - No. 13 Anthony Rossi (UK) def. Peter Kobelt (OSU) 6-2, 7-5
4 - No. 99 Ille Van Engelen (OSU) def. No. 79 Tom Jomby (UK) 6-4, 3-6, 7-5
5 - No. 65 Devin McCarthy (OSU) def. No. 87 Alejandro Gomez (UK) 6-2, 6-4
6 - No. 107 Connor Smith (OSU) def. No. 119 Panav Jha (UK) 6-4, 6-4
Order of Finish:
Singles - 5, 1, 3, 6, 2, 4*
Doubles - 1, 2*
ITA National Men's Team Indoor Championships Round of 16
No. 6 Kentucky 4, No. 11 Texas A&M 0
Boar's Head Sports Club - Charlottesville, Va.
Friday, February 17, 2012
1 - No. 6 Eric Quigley (UK) vs. No. 15 Alexis Klegou (Texas A&M) 5-7, 6-1, 0-0 DNF
2 - No. 20 Alex Musialek (UK) vs. Colin Hoover (Texas A&M) 7-6, 3-2 DNF
3 - No. 13 Anthony Rossi (UK) def. Junior Ore (Texas A&M) 6-4, 6-3
4 - No. 79 Tom Jomby (UK) def. Jeremy Efferding (Texas A&M) 6-4, 6-3
5 - No. 87 Alejandro Gomez (UK) def. John Lewis (Texas A&M) 6-0, 6-2
6 - No. 119 Panav Jha (UK) vs. Jackson Withrow (Texas A&M) 4-6, 4-3
1 - No. 48 Eric Quigley/Panav Jha (UK) def. No. 55 Jackson Withrow/Junior Ore (Texas A&M) 8-6
2 - Tom Jomby/Anthony Rossi (UK) def. No. 36 John Lewis/Colin Hoover (Texas A&M) 9-7
3 - Alex Musialek/Alejandro Gomez (UK) vs. Jordan Szabo/Alexis Klegou (Texas A&M) 8-8 DNF
Order of Finish:
Singles - 5, 4, 3*
Doubles - 1, 2*