May 18, 2012
ATHENS, Ga. --- The second-seeded University of Georgia men's tennis team advanced to the quarterfinals of the 2012 NCAA Championships with a 4-0 win over 15th-seeded North Carolina Friday night at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex. With the win, the Bulldogs improve to 26-2 on the season and will meet the winner of the Pepperdine-Tulsa match in the quarters on Sunday at 4 p.m.
Georgia has now won a season-high 10 matches in a row, while 26 wins is the most in a season for UGA since the 2008 national championship run.
"I thought we played a great match. Frankly, from start to finish, I thought our guys were strong, composed, and were having fun," said head coach Manuel Diaz. "That's an impressive start for us. I'm really pleased."
"This is definitely a very deep lineup," Diaz said. "These guys at the bottom have provided a lot of winners this year. Traditionally, we've always had great depth and that's a staple. We don't really drop off a whole lot. That's one of our strengths this year. As we go forward, the top-five teams in the country are pretty much the same way."
The Bulldogs started hot by taking the doubles point with wins on courts two and three over the Tar Heels. First off was the No. 3 team of KU Singh and Wil Spencer, who defeated the team of Esben Hess-Olesen and Zach Hunter by an 8-4 score. The Bulldogs then captured the clinch to take the point with an 8-5 win at No. 2 for Nathan Pasha and Ignacio Taboada over Cameron Ahari and Brennan Boyajian. Pasha and Taboada are now 13-0 on the season together. UNC held a 7-4 lead in the match on court one when it was suspended.
The Bulldogs came out equally hot in singles, winning all six first sets before Pieters won his team-best 12th straight match as he took down UNC's Steiro by a score of 6-3, 6-1 at No. 6 to make it 2-0. Georgia built its lead to 3-0 when Singh defeated 92nd-ranked Boyajian, 6-3, 6-1 at No. 2. The Bulldogs then picked up the clinch and sealed their third win of the tournament when Pasha broke to close his match at No. 5, 6-2, 6-2, vs. William Parker. It marked the team-leading sixth clincher of the season for the freshman, who moves to 22-2 in dual match play this season.
Georgia is playing in its 34th NCAA Championships and is hosting the event for a record 30th time overall and 27th on the men's side. Tonight marked the Bulldogs' 90th all-time win in the tournament, now winners of 26 of their last 29 NCAA matches dating back to 2007.
Georgia is making its 29th straight appearance in the NCAA Championships, the third-longest active streak in the nation, behind just UCLA (36) and Southern Cal (35). Tonight the Bulldogs moved into the round of eight for the eighth straight time.
Georgia's quarterfinal match will include live video and live scoring on Georgiadogs.com, in addition to the Georgia Tennis Live Chat.
#3 Georgia 4, #15 North Carolina 0
1. #11 Wil Spencer (UGA) vs. #26 Jose Hernandez (UNC) 6-1, 2-5, unfinished
2. #19 KU Singh (UGA) def. #92 Brennan Boyajian (UNC) 6-3, 6-1
3. #32 Sadio Doumbia (UGA) vs. Esben Hess-Olesen (UNC) 6-2, 3-3, unfinished
4. #52 Ignacio Taboada (UGA) vs. Joey Burkhardt (UNC) 7-6 (0-5), 3-3, unfinished
5. Nathan Pasha (UGA) def. William Parker (UNC) 6-2, 6-2
6. #60 Hernus Pieters (UGA) def. Oystein Steiro (UNC) 6-3, 6-1
1. Hernus Pieters/Sadio Doumbia (UGA) vs. #20 Joey Burkhardt/Jose Hernandez (UNC) 4-7, unfinished
2. #40 Nathan Pasha/Ignacio Taboada (UGA) def. Brennan Boyajian/Cameron Ahari (UNC) 8-5
3. KU Singh/Wil Spencer (UGA) def. Esben Hess-Olesen/Zach Hunter (UNC) 8-4
North Carolina 15-8; National ranking #15
Georgia 26-2; National ranking #3
Order of finish: Doubles (3,2); Singles (6,2,5)
Official: Jim Russell T-2:30 A-2304