March 25, 2012
BATON ROUGE, La. --- Playing its third match in five days, the No. 4 Georgia men’s tennis team picked up another SEC road win as it defeated No. 26 LSU by a 4-3 score Sunday afternoon at W.T. Dub Robinson Stadium, with sophomore Hernus Pieters providing the clinching point with a win at No. 6 singles.
The Bulldogs improve to 16-1 (6-0) on the season, now winners of an SEC-best eight straight matches, and drop LSU to 11-7 (2-4).
“We were fortunate to get out with the win today,” said head coach Manuel Diaz. “Our guys fought their hearts out and that’s how we won this one. Our ‘pit’ (courts 4-5-6) continues to grind it out for us in these matches. Everybody came together and pulled through despite not having our best day in some spots. We can do better – we’ll need to tighten up and get ready to play a big match on Friday vs. Kentucky and just continue to hopefully survive and advance.”
Georgia won the doubles point for the 13th time in 17 attempts this season while sweeping for the fifth time, notching wins on all three courts to move to singles with the early edge. The Bulldogs were started off with a win for 31st-ranked Ignacio Taboada and Pieters on court one, as they defeated No. 51 Olivier Borsos and Chris Simpson, 8-3. Both of the other courts went to tiebreakers, and Georgia got the clinch from its No. 3 team as Wil Spencer and KU Singh defeated the team of Tom Knights and Stefan Szacinski, 9-8(3). The Bulldogs then rounded out the sweep as the No. 2 team of Sadio Doumbia and Nathan Pasha also pulled out the breaker over Neal Skupski and Roger Anderson, 9-8(7).
The Bulldogs were helped early with a win in singles for senior and 29th-ranked Taboada who won his eighth match in a row and improved to 16-1 in dual match play going 6-2, 6-4 over Szacinski at No. 4. That gave the Bulldogs the 2-0 lead, before it became 3-0 as the freshman Pasha downed Knights by a score of 7-6(5), 6-1 at No. 5. For Pasha, it was his 24th win of the year and 13th in dual match action.
But LSU responded with a win at No. 2, as 85th-ranked Skupski pulled out the 7-5, 6-4 win over Singh to cut it to 3-1, and No. 71 Borsos followed as he defeated Spencer, 7-5, 6-4 at No. 1 to make it 3-2.
But Pieters rounded out the pit’s sweep on the day as he earned a three-set decision over David Roberts at No. 6, winning 6-2, 5-7, 6-3 to seal the road victory for UGA. That left just court No. 3 still on, where Doumbia defaulted at 5-4 on serve in the third set to make the final score 4-3.
Today gave the Bulldogs their 11th straight win over LSU dating back to 2003, moving the all-time series to 44-14.
With Georgia’s win today as well as Kentucky’s victory over Alabama, the Bulldogs and Wildcats remain the only two unbeatens in the SEC heading into their head-to-head clash Friday night in Athens. Georgia and UK are set to face off at 5 p.m. at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex. Live scoring, video streaming, and the Georgia Tennis Live Chat will all be available on Georgiadogs.com.
#4 Georgia 4, #26 LSU 3
1. #71 Olivier Borsos (LSU) def. #8 Wil Spencer (UGA) 7-5, 6-4
2. #85 Neal Skupski (LSU) def. #50 KU Singh (UGA) 7-5, 6-4
3. Chris Simpson (LSU) def. #20 Sadio Doumbia (UGA) 1-6, 7-5, 5-4 (default)
4. #29 Ignacio Taboada (UGA) def. Stefan Szacinski (LSU) 6-2, 6-4
5. Nathan Pasha (UGA) def. Tom Knights (LSU) 7-6 (7-5), 6-1
6. #70 Hernus Pieters (UGA) def. David Roberts (LSU) 6-2, 5-7, 6-3
1. #31 Ignacio Taboada/Hernus Pieters (UGA) def. #51 Olivier Borsos/Chris Simpson (LSU) 8-3
2. #52 Sadio Doumbia/Nathan Pasha (UGA) def. Neal Skupski/Roger Anderson (LSU) 9-8 (9-7)
3. Wil Spencer/KU Singh (UGA) def. Tom Knights/Stefan Szacinski (LSU) 9-8 (7-3)
Georgia 16-1 (6-0); National ranking #4
LSU 11-7 (2-4); National ranking #26
Order of finish: Doubles (1,3,2); Singles (4,5,2,1,6,3)