Wildcats Fall in Lexington Challenger

July 20, 2011

LEXINGTON, Ky. -- After being rewarded a wildcard into the main draw, University of Kentucky seniors Eric Quigley and Alex Musialek both fell in the opening round of the Fifth Third Bank Tennis Championships singles main draw Tuesday night at the Hilary J. Boone Tennis Complex.

Quigley started the action at the event, falling to University of Tennessee star Rhyne Williams 6-3, 7-6 (5). Quigley and Williams each held serve to start the first set before Williams would go up a break at 3-1 and then break again to increase his lead to 4-1. Quigley would fight back, breaking Williams back-to-back times, but the UK senior wasn’t able to hold serve and fell in the first 6-3.

In the second set, Quigley and Williams held serve throughout, forcing a tiebreaker. In the tiebreaker, Williams jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead before Quigley responded to tie it 2-2. After both players earned winners the next few points, Quigley took his lone lead of the tiebreaker at 4-3 before Williams won four of the next five points to claim the second set 7-6 (5) and the match.

Williams, who spent time ranked No. 1 in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association singles poll during the 2011 collegiate season, just finished his sophomore year at UT. In 2011, Williams made it to the finals of the NCAA Singles Championship and won the ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships.

Quigley had a splendid 2011 season, tying the school record for singles wins with 45. The top-10 ranking and Quigley’s high seed in the NCAA Singles Championship makes him a singles All-America honoree for the second consecutive season. The native of Pewee Valley, Ky., is now a three-time All-America recipient after being named a singles and doubles All-American last season. Quigley is only the fifth three-time All-American in school history, joining Rich Benson, Greg van Emburgh, Cedric Kauffmann and Jesse Witten.

Musialek also fell in the opening round, dropping a tight match 6-4, 7-6 (2) to former North Carolina standout Nicholas Monroe. After both players held serve continually to start the match, Monroe broke Musialek to take a 5-4 lead and then held serve to gather the 6-4 win. In the second set, Monroe, who won the Arthur Ashe Sportsmanship Award and was named UNC’s Student-Athlete of the Year in his senior season with the program, broke Musialek early to take a 3-1 lead. The UK star would counter, battling back to force a tiebreaker, but Monroe responded, winning the tiebreaker and the second set 7-6 (2).  

Musialek, who was ranked as high as No. 32 in the nation in 2011, finished the year with his second consecutive top-50 final ranking. The native of Dax, France, was impressive for UK during the 2011 season, earning a 28-16 record with 13 wins over ranked foes in dual-match play. Musialek also qualified for the NCAA Singles Championship for the second consecutive season, earning his first win in the tournament this year.