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Happy Birthday - April 13: Tennis' Jarryd Chaplin

On April 13, we send Happy Birthday wishes to junior tennis player Jarryd Chaplin.

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ON TOUR: Williams Reaches 1st ATP Quarterfinal

Former tennis All-American Rhyne Williams took another step forward in his career Thursday, beating former top-10 star Ivo Karlovic to reach his first career ATP-level quarterfinal.

Williams held serve for the whole three set match and broke Karlovic just once, but that was enough for a 6-4, 6-7 (5), 7-6 (3) victory in the second round of the US Men's Clay Court Championship, an ATP 250 event in Houston. 

Williams was originally set to play top American Sam Querrey, but the 20th-ranked player withdrew prior to the match with injury. Karlovic, the 2007 champion ranked 136 in the world, was the lucky loser who replaced him in the draw. 

Karlovic, who stands 6-foot-10, served a tournament-record 28 aces in the match against Williams, but that was not enough to beat the former Vol. 

Williams, ranked 144, is now in his first career quarterfinal this afternoon where he will face another veteran, 35-year old Ruben Ramirez Hidalgo of Spain. Ramirez Hidalgo knocked off sixth-seeded Fernando Verdasco 6-3, 6-2.

While Williams has won a Challenger on hard courts, it's important to note that Williams has already achieved professional success on clay, a surface generally less familiar to American players. All three of Williams' singles titles on the ITF Futures Circuit have come on clay courts. 

In Mexico: John-Patrick Smith continued his winning ways in doubles on Thursday night. He and fellow Aussie Sam Groth beat wild cards Carsten Ball and Daniel Garza 6-4, 7-5. Smith is a career-best No. 94 in the doubles world rankings this week. 

In Oklahoma: Tennys Sandgren, the top seed at the Oklahoma Futures, had his run end in the second round Thursday. Former Ole Miss Rebel Tucker Vorster defeated him 1-6, 6-2, 6-4. Sandgren will now turn his attention to the series of American Challengers on clay.

ON TOUR: ATP Tour Rankings (4/8/2013)

Here are the Vols' updated ATP Tour rankings as of April 8, 2013. The Vols are listed by highest singles ranking first. The number in parenthesis denotes change from previous week.

Rhyne Williams
Singles: 144 (+1)
Doubles: 197 (-2)
Note: Off last week ... Playing in the second round today of the U.S. Clay Court Championships vs. top American Sam Querry ... Won first-round match on Monday, his second ATP-level win of the year.

Tennys Sandgren
Singles: 213 (-2)
Doubles: 164 (-10)
Note: Served as a hitting partner for the U.S. Davis Cup Team last week in Boise, Idaho, as the Americans lost to Serbia ... Playing at a $15K Futures this week in Oklahoma City, Okla.

John-Patrick Smith
Singles: 248 (+1)
Doubles: 94 (+1)
Note: Reached quarterfinals in doubles of the $35K+H Leon Challenger in Mexico ... Playing this week in Guadalajara for another Challenger, where he reached the second round of singles and is playing in the doubles quarterfinals.

Matteo Fago
Singles: 735 (+115)
Doubles: 979 (-3)
Note: Reached a career-best in the singles rankings after points were added from a finals appearance at a Futures in Turkey ... Lost in the first round of singles at a $15K Futures in Italy last week. 

Markus Kerner Set for Davis Cup Debut

Men's tennis signee Markus Kerner is scheduled to play his first Davis Cup match this weekend, representing Estonia in its relegation play-off match against Bulgaria. 

Kerner was listed on Estonia's team for its tie earlier this year against Ireland, but did not play. He is set to play singles against Dimitar Kuzmanov and Tihomir Grazdanov, two players ranked in the top 650 in the ATP World Rankings. Kerner, one of the Vols' two signees during the fall period, enters the weekend ranked No. 1343. 

The Davis Cup is an annual international competition that pits country against country in team competition. Nine Vols have represented their nations in the Davis Cup over the years, including current sophomore Mikelis Libietis, who took the court for Latvia in 2011. Associate head coach Chris Woodruff played for the United States in 2000, winning a deciding match against Zimbabwe.

Former Vol Tennys Sandgren is also part of the Davis Cup action this weekend. He is serving as a hitting partner for the U.S. team as they get ready to play Serbia in Boise, Idaho. 

Vol Calls - Monday Night at 8 p.m.

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"Vol Calls" at 8 p.m. Eastern / 7 p.m. Central will feature a live report from Oklahoma City as the Lady Vols basketball team prepares to meet Louisville Tuesday night for the right to advance to the NCAA Women's Final Four. 

After Spring Break last week, Spring Football practice cranks back up on Tuesday and Bob Kesling and Brent Hubbs will talk to new assistant football coach Robert Gillespie. 

In addition, UT first baseman Scott Price and sophomore tennis star Hunter Reese will be on-site guests at Calhoun's On the River in downtown Knoxville.  

Be sure to listen to the Vol Network on UTSports.com/AllAccess

ON TOUR: ATP Tour Rankings (4/1/2013)

Here are the Vols' updated ATP Tour rankings as of April 1, 2013. The Vols are listed by highest singles ranking first. The number in parenthesis denotes change from previous week.

Rhyne Williams
Singles: 145 (+1)
Doubles: 195 (+4)
Note: Off last week ... Off this week.

Tennys Sandgren
Singles: 211 (+7)
Doubles: 154 (-4)
Note: Last week reached his first career semifinal, making the final four on the clay courts at the $35K Challenger in San Luis, Mexico ... Singles ranking of 211 is a career best ... Serving as a hitting partner for the U.S. Davis Cup Team this week in Boise, Idaho.

John-Patrick Smith
Singles: 249 (-10)
Doubles: 95 (+7)
Note: Off last week ... Playing the final round of qualifying at the $35K+H Leon Challenger in Mexico to start a series of hard court tournaments in the high atmosphere hard courts ... Doubles ranking is a career best.

Matteo Fago
Singles: 865 (-17)
Doubles: 976 (+126)
Note: Off last week ... Awarded wild card into this week's $15K Futures on clay in Italy ... Doubles points added from reaching the semifinals of a Futures in Turkey earlier this month.

Happy Birthday - March 22, Martin, Summerhill, Woolridge, Williams

There are a slew of Vol athletes that will celebrate a birthday today.

Happy Birthday to former defensive lineman Ben Martin and current Vol running back Deanthonie Summerhill of the football team.
http://grfx.cstv.com/photos/schools/tenn/sports/m-footbl/auto_original/5728645.jpeg?1363970240    http://grfx.cstv.com/photos/schools/tenn/sports/m-footbl/auto_original/6922343.jpeg?1363969793

Today also marks the birthday the one they call 'Swiperboy' Renaldo Woolridge formerly of the basketball team.
    

In addition All-American Rhyne Williams of the men's tennis team will celebrate his birthday.

http://grfx.cstv.com/photos/schools/tenn/sports/m-tennis/auto_original/4898776.jpeg?1363966198


ON TOUR: ATP Tour Rankings (3/19/13)

Here are the Vols' updated ATP Tour rankings as of March 4, 2013. The Vols are listed by highest singles ranking first. The number in parenthesis denotes change from previous week.

Rhyne Williams
Singles: 146 (-13)
Doubles: 199 (-11)
Note: Played qualifying at the BNP Paribas Open last time out, losing in the opening round ... Received wild card to play in this week's ATP Masters 1000 Miami event, the Sony Open ... Faces Santiago Giraldo in the opening round.

Tennys Sandgren
Singles: 218 (-2)
Doubles: 150 (-4)
Note: Lost in the first round of last week's $15,000 Futures in Calabasas, Calif. ... this week playing in a similar event in Costa Mesa, where he is seeded second and taking on former LSU star Michael Venus.

John-Patrick Smith
Singles: 239 (-5)
Doubles: 102 (-4)
Note: Off last week ... Back in action on the indoor hard courts at the Rimouski Challenger in Canada ... Playing Jimmy Wang in the first round ... Also seeded third in doubles.

Happy Birthday - March 10: Tennis' Ed Jones

On March 10, we wish Happy Birthday to tennis senior Edward Jones.
Edward Jones

ON TOUR: ATP Tour Rankings (3/4/13)

Here are the Vols' updated ATP Tour rankings as of March 4, 2013. The Vols are listed by highest singles ranking first. The number in parenthesis denotes change from previous week.

Rhyne Williams
Singles: 133 (0)
Doubles: 188 (-9)
Note: Off last week ... Playing qualifying this week at the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, where he played his way into his first career ATP main draw a year ago ... Has risen 60 spots in the rankings since January. 

Tennys Sandgren
Singles: 216 (-1)
Doubles: 146 (-9)
Note: Off last week ... Off this week.

John-Patrick Smith
Singles: 234 (0)
Doubles: 98 (+5)
Note: Back in doubles top 100 after winning a $15,000 Futures title two weeks ago with Sam Groth ... Off last week ... Has returned to Knoxville after spending the last three months in Australia. 

Matteo Fago
Singles: 851 (0)
Doubles: 1106 (+2)
Note: Off last week ... Off this week.

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