No. 5 Oklahoma Knocks Off No. 17 Kentucky in Outdoor Opener
Feb. 21, 2014
LEXINGTON, Ky. – The University of Kentucky men’s tennis team dropped the first four singles matches that were completed on Friday afternoon after capturing the doubles point over No. 5 Oklahoma, as the Sooners held on for a 5-2 win over Kentucky in Norman, Okla.
This match marked the opener of the 2014 outdoor season, as the Wildcats got one outdoor practice day in Lexington and one in Norman before taking on the fifth-ranked Sooners on Friday afternoon.
No. 19 Tom Jomby collected a 6-3, 4-6, 1-0 win over No. 2 Guillermo Alcorta of Oklahoma in singles, highlighting the evening for the Wildcats. The win for Jomby marks the highest-ranked player that Jomby has ever beaten in his career at Kentucky. Alcorta forced a third set after Jomby took the first, 6-3, and Jomby won the 10-point super tiebreak, 10-7.
Kentucky got off to a great start in doubles, with courts two and three both leaning UK’s way as the Wildcats won the doubles point with wins on those two courts. Once the match turned to singles, Oklahoma took control of the contest, winning four of the six first sets and fighting to hang on to win all four of those courts in straight sets to clinch the match.
In doubles, the first UK win was collected on court two by sophomore Beck Pennington and senior Alejandro Gomez, as they tallied an 8-5 win. The match was on serve and all square through ten games at 5-5 before Pennington and Gomez broke to take the 6-5 lead late in the match. After another quick hold, Pennington and Gomez fought off a late charge from OU and took the match.
The doubles point was clinched on court three as freshman Nils Ellefsen and senior Ryuji Hirooka collected an 8-6 win on court three to give Kentucky the 1-0 lead overall in the match. Hirooka and Ellefsen collected the break at 3-2 to take the 4-2 lead and held serve the rest of the way home, serving out an 8-6 win. The win for Hirooka and Ellefsen pushes their season record to 12-0 all-time as a duo.
In singles, Oklahoma, which has four ranked players inside the Intercollegiate Tennis Association’s top 50, including two players in the top five, came out strong, winning four of the six first sets. The Sooners then went on to take singles wins in straight sets on courts two, three, four and six to end the match and clinch it.
After the clinch occurred, the matches on courts one and five were played out with UK and OU splitting them.
UK kicks off SEC play next Friday afternoon in Baton Rouge, La., with a test against the LSU Tigers. Kentucky finishes the non-conference with a 7-4 overall record.
No. 5 Oklahoma 5, No. 17 Kentucky 2
Gregg Wadley Tennis Complex – Norman, Okla.
Friday, Feb. 21, 2014
Doubles (Order of finish: 1, 2, 3*)
1- No. 12 Andrew Harris/Dane Webb (OU) def. Tom Jomby/Kevin Lai (UK) 8-2
2- Beck Pennington/Alejandro Gomez (UK) def. Guillermo Alcorta/Axel Alvarez (OU) 8-5
3- Ryuji Hirooka/Nils Ellefsen (UK) def. Kick Papic/Peerakit Siributewong (OU) 8-6
Singles (Order of finish: 4, 3, 6, 2*, 5, 1)
1-. 19 Tom Jomby (UK) def. No. 2 Guillermo Alcorta (OU) 6-3, 4-6, 1-0
2- No. 4 Axel Alvarez (OU) def. Alejandro Gomez (UK) 6-3, 6-2
3- No. 28 Andrew Harris (OU) def. No. 76 Beck Pennington (UK) 6-4, 6-4
4- No. 46 Dane Webb (OU) def. Jerry Lopez (UK) 6-2, 6-2
5- Alex Ghilea (OU) def. Grant Roberts (UK) 3-6, 6-3, 1-0
6- Peerakit Siributewong (OU) def. Ryuji Hirooka (UK) 6-2, 6-0
For continuing coverage of UK men’s tennis, log on to UKathletics.com.