Jan. 17, 2011
The Vols lost serve late and could not recover, falling 8-5 to Georgia's Javier Garrapiz and Hernius Pieters at the Goodfriend Tennis Center.
Conkic had his serve broken three times in the match, including near the end of the eight-game set at 5-6. When serving for the match at 7-5, Pieters fell behind 15-30, but he and Garrapiz took the next three points on their way to the doubles championship.
"The tournament went better and better each day," Conkic said. "Unfortunately today, I was struggling with my serve. I thought JP played great. We'll just work on some things, and hopefully we'll get better next time."
Conkic and Smith had entered the final having won all nine matches they had played together the last two seasons, a record that included five victories against top-20 opponents. Garrapiz and Pieters are currently ranked 14th nationally and entered the tournament as the No. 2 seed.
In the singles championship, Georgia's Wil Spencer defeated top-seeded Eric Quigley of Kentucky in a tiebreaker 6-2, 4-6, 7-6 (1).
All told, the weekend was a generally positive one for Tennessee two seniors. Smith, the 2009 SEC Indoors champion in singles and doubles, lost in the singles semifinals to Quigley. Conkic had entered the weekend as the defending singles champion but was upset in the opening round. He recovered to win all three of his consolation matches in straight sets.
The third-seeded Volunteers open the dual match season Friday by hosting East Tennessee State at 2 p.m. at the Goodfriend Tennis Center. The match is free to attend.
SEC Coaches Indoor Championships
Main Draw Singles
(9-16) Wil Spencer, UGA, def. (1) Eric Quigley, UK, 2-6, 6-4, 7-6 (1)
Main Draw Doubles
(2) Javier Garrapiz/Hernius Pieters, UGA, def. (4) Boris Conkic/John-Patrick Smith, UT, 8-5