May 14, 2014
ATHENS, Ga. --- The 10th-seeded and eighth-ranked Georgia men's tennis team (18-7) punched its ticket to the round of 16 "final site" of the 2014 NCAA Championships last weekend, winning its first and second round matches in Athens to advance out of the regional round for the 11 consecutive time and 14th time out of 16 tries since the current format was adopted in 1999.
Georgia will take on the No. 7 seed North Carolina (26-5) in the round of 16 on Fri., May 16 at 4 p.m. The Tar Heels defeated South Carolina by a 4-1 score in the second round to advance. A win would set Georgia up to face either Kentucky or Oklahoma in the Elite Eight on May 18.
Georgiadogs.com will offer live scoring, video streaming, and the Georgia Tennis Live Chat as long as the Bulldogs are alive in the tournament. UGA is serving as host of the team tournament and individual events a record 31st time.
GEORGIA IN THE NCAA TOURNAMENT: The Bulldogs are making their 36th overall appearance in the tournament and 31st in a row, now with an all-time record of 98-31 (.760). Georgia reached the NCAA semifinals in 2013, and has reached the finals a total of 13 times.
In all, the squad owns six NCAA championships, most recently coming in back-to-back seasons in 2007-08.
A LOOK AT THE FIELD: Fourteen of the 16 national seeds advanced out of their respective regionals to make it to Athens on the men's side, with the only two upsets coming in College Station (California def. No. 8 Texas A&M) and in Durham (Tennessee def. No. 11 Duke).
The Southeastern Conference leads the way with four teams in the round of 16, followed by the Pac-12 and Big 12 each with three, the ACC and Big 10 with two, and the Big East and Ivy League with one apiece.
HOW THEY GOT HERE: Georgia used wins over Jacksonville State (4-0) and NC State (4-1) in the regional rounds in Athens last weekend to reach the round of 16.
Against the Wolfpack on Sunday, the Bulldogs (18-7) won the doubles point, then found three singles wins to down the Wolfpack (18-10) and advance. Sophomore Austin Smith provided the clinch at No. 1 to seal it.
IN THE RANKINGS: Georgia came in at No. 8 in the May 1 team poll, the team's 11th trip inside the top-10 this season. Southern California held the top spot, followed by Oklahoma, Ohio State, Virginia, UCLA, Baylor, North Carolina, Georgia, Texas, and Texas A&M to round out the top-10 entering the NCAA Championships.
In the singles poll, Austin Smith leads the way for the Bulldogs at No. 23, while Nathan Pasha came in at No. 30, Garrett Brasseaux at No. 70, and Ben Wagland at No. 82. In doubles, the team of Wagland and Hernus Pieters is No. 8 this week.
GEORGIA WITH FOUR PLAYERS IN INDIVIDUAL TOURNEYS: Four members of the Georgia men's tennis team were awarded at-large bids to the singles and doubles portion of the NCAA Championships to be held May 21-26 at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex. The individual championships will follow the team tournament set for May 15-20 in Athens.
Junior Nathan Pasha and sophomore Austin Smith were selected for the singles draw, while senior Hernus Pieters and sophomore Ben Wagland were selected as a No. 5-8 seed in the doubles draw, which secures All-America honors for the tandem.
Match-ups for the individual tournaments will be announced during the team portion. A total of 64 players will participate in singles in addition to 32 doubles teams.
Georgia players have won the NCAA singles title four times: Mikael Pernfors in 1984 and 1985, and Matias Boeker in 2001 and 2002. Pernfors beat teammate George Bezecny for the crown in 1985. The Bulldogs have won three NCAA doubles titles including Ola Malmqvist and Allen Miller in 1983, Boeker and Travis Parrott in 2001, and John Isner and Antonio Ruiz in 2005.
GEORGIA TO HOST NCAA TENNIS CHAMPIONSHIPS AGAIN IN 2017: The University of Georgia will serve as the host site for the 2017 NCAA Division I Men's and Women's Tennis Championships, it was announced by the NCAA in December.
The Dan Magill Tennis Complex has played host to the men's NCAA Championships 24 times and the women's NCAA Championships three times, in addition to three combined tournaments for a total of 30, most recently in 2012. UGA will also serve as host in May 2014.
The Georgia men's tennis team has won six NCAA titles, including five in Athens. The women claimed the national title in 1994 and at home in 2000.