Jan. 25, 2011
LEXINGTON, Ky. - In it first road test of the young season, the No. 12 Kentucky men's tennis team scored four huge singles wins, including freshman Grant Roberts' clinching win in a third-set tiebreaker to defeat No. 46 Indiana 4-3 and avoid an upset at the IU Indoor Tennis Center on Tuesday.
"That was a great match," Kentucky head coach Dennis Emery said. "We played a very inspired Indiana team today, who is very good on their home courts. The courts were very quick but they understood how to play on those courts and did a good today."
Kentucky (4-0) headed into singles play down 1-0 after Indiana took the doubles point. But the Wildcats came out strong in singles action, winning the first set in five of the six matches. Indiana would fight back, posting wins on five courts in the second set.
"When we won five first sets in singles, I thought that we were in good position," Emery said, "but then the next thing you know we were in the third set in four of those matches. They did a really good job of turning those matches around. I thought at the end Eric Quigley stepped up and finished his guy off and Brad Cox played like a senior today with a lot of poise on the big points to finish his match."
With two matches still on court and Indiana holding a 3-2 lead, Kentucky sophomore Anthony Rossi and Roberts stepped up to push Kentucky to the victory. Moments after Rossi broke serve and then held serve to claim the win at No. 4 singles, Roberts fought back in a tiebreaker to win at No. 6 singles and give UK the win.
"Rossi played very well at the end of his match," Emery said. "For him to break serve and then hold serve in a pressure situation like that was a good sign. I was happy with how he battled back and finished his match off with a win today.
Roberts was down 4-3 in the tiebreaker and came up with two really good serves to take the 5-4 lead and then broke twice to finish it off. It was a great performance by a freshman in his first tight dual match like that and I think that it shows a lot of competitive spirit to be able to do that. We are really pleased and proud of him. After an injury-riddled fall he has come back and worked hard and done a good job for us and deserves a win like this."
Kentucky won four singles matches altogether, getting wins at No. 1 singles when Quigley defeated Jeremy Langer 6-1, 3-6, 6-1, while Cox posted the lone straight-sets victory on the day for UK, taking down Santiago Gruter 7-6, 6-0. Rossi's singles victory came over Isade Juneau 6-2, 2-6, 6-4, while Roberts took down Dimitrije 6-2, 2-6, 7-6.
UK has dominated the series with Indiana since 2000, winning eight of the last nine matches. The teams first met in 1933 and Kentucky holds the all-time record against IU 26-3.
Indiana (2-1) took the doubles point, winning all three doubles matches. Gruter and Langer started the scoring for Indiana, defeating Alex Musialek and Rossi 8-5 at the No. 2 doubles position before IU clinched the doubles point when Josh MacTaggart and Stephen Vogl defeated Quigley and Cox 8-6 at No. 1 doubles. Indiana swept the doubles matches at No. 3 doubles when Will Kendall and Juneau took down Alberto Gonzalez and Roberts 8-6.
Kentucky returns to the courts this Saturday when they host the third annual International Tennis Association Kick-off Weekend with No. 22 Wake Forest, No. 30 Wisconsin and No. 42 Boise State. UK will take on Boise State on Saturday at 2 p.m. ET. If the Wildcats beat the Broncos, UK will play the winner of Wake Forest and Wisconsin on Sunday at 2 p.m. ET with a chance to advance to the National Indoors in Seattle, Wash.
For more information on the Kentucky men's tennis team visit UKathletics.com.
No. 12 Kentucky 4, No. 46 Indiana 3
Bloomington, Ind. - IU Indoor Tennis Center
#1 - No. 2 Eric Quigley (UK) def. Jeremy Langer (IU) 6-1, 3-6, 6-1
#2 - Josh MacTaggart (IU) def. No. 39 Alex Musialek (UK) 4-6, 6-3, 6-3
#3 - Brad Cox (UK) def. Santiago Gruter (IU) 7-6, 6-0
#4 - Anthony Rossi (UK) def. Isade Juneau (IU) 6-2, 4-6, 6-4
#5 - Stephen Vogl (IU) def. No. 72 Alberto Gonzalez (UK) 6-3, 7-5
#6 - Grant Roberts (UK) def. Dimitrije Tasic (IU) 6-2, 2-6, 7-6
#1 - Josh MacTaggart/Stephen Vogl (IU) def. Eric Quigley/Brad Cox (UK) 8-6
#2 - Santiago Gruter/Jeremy Langer (IU) def. Alex Musialek/Anthony Rossi (UK) 8-5
#3 - Will Kendall/Isade Juneau (IU) def. Alberto Gonzalez/Grant Roberts (UK) 8-6
Order of Finish:
Singles: 5, 1, 3, 2, 4, 6*
Doubles: 2, 1*, 3