Quigley Named ITA Ohio Valley Player to Watch;

May 24, 2010

LEXINGTON, Ky. -

University of Kentucky men’s tennis player Eric Quigley has been named Intercollegiate Tennis Association Player to Watch for the Ohio Valley, the organization announced recently.

The award goes to a player who has an outstanding season and is expected to perform at a high level the rest of his career. Criteria also includes a player’s sportsmanship and character.

Quigley will compete in the NCAA Singles and Doubles Championships beginning Wednesday at the University of Georgia’s Dan Magill Tennis Complex in Athens, Ga. The Pewee Valley, Ky., native has enjoyed a standout sophomore campaign rising to a No. 12 listing at the end of the regular season. Quigley helped guide the Wildcats to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Championships before they lost to defending national champion Southern California 4-0 Friday.

Quigley enters this week’s singles tournament with a top-16 seeding and a 21-6 record in dual matches this season. Quigley has posted an 11-1 mark since the start of April. He owns a 5-2 record this spring against top-25 players, including wins over fourth-ranked Guillermo Gomez of Georgia Tech two weeks ago and seventh-ranked Alexandre Lacroix of Florida in April. Quigley has defeated 13 players ranked in top 65.

Quigley will team up with junior Brad Cox (Duluth, Ga.) to participate in the doubles tournament beginning Thursday.

Witten Drops First-Round Match at French Open

Former UK men’s tennis star Jesse Witten lost his first-round match at the French Open to Marcos Baghdatis of Cyprus, 6-3, 6-4, 6-3, on Monday morning at the Stade Roland Garros in Paris, France.

Witten, who was a four-time All-American at Kentucky (2002-05), won three qualifiers last week to earn his first appearance at the Grand Slam event. Witten has participated twice in the singles tournament at the US Open (2006 and 2009), with a third-round finish in 2009. The native of Naples, Fla., also took part in the US Open doubles tournament in 2006.

Witten entered the tournament listed at No. 184 according to ATP rankings. Baghdatis holds a No. 29 singles ranking and has played in five previous French Opens, including a fourth-round finish in 2007.