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Vols Fall to Georgia in Regular-Season Finale
John-Patrick Smith

John-Patrick Smith

April 18, 2009

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The Tennessee men's tennis team could not end Georgia's home winning streak Saturday night as the fourth-ranked Bulldogs extended their streak to 60 consecutive home wins with a 5-2 victory over the Vols in front of a crowd of over 1,000 people at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex.

The result gives Georgia the No. 2 seed in the upcoming SEC Tournament while the Vols will be the No. 3 seed. Ole Miss is the regular season SEC champion and will be the top-seed in the tournament.

Georgia (21-2, 10-1 SEC) took the early 1-0 lead by capturing the doubles point. Borja Malo and Christian Vitulli handed Matt Brewer and Bryan Swartz their first dual-match loss this season, 8-3 at the No. 3 position for UGA's first victory. The Bulldogs clinched the point when seventh-ranked Jamie Hunt and Nate Schnugg defeated fifth-ranked Davey Sandgren and John-Patrick Smith 8-4. The Vols prevented the sweep when 46th-ranked Boris Conkic and Matteo Fago defeated Drake Bernstein and Javier Garrapiz 8-6.

The Bulldogs kept the Vols on their heels in singles by winning the first set in four of the six singles matches.

Georgia went up 2-0 when Vitulli defeated Christian Hansen, 6-1, 6-0 at the No. 6 position.

Tennessee (19-5, 8-3 SEC) got on the board when Smith knocked off Schnugg at the No. 1 position in a battle between two top-10 opponents. The eighth-ranked Smith was able to break the 10th-ranked Schnugg late in both sets to win, 6-4, 6-4. The UT sophomore finishes the regular season 15-5 in dual-match play with all matches coming from the top-spot in the lineup.

The Bulldogs regained momentum in the match moments later when Josh Varela defeated Sandgren 6-4, 6-3 at the No. 4 position.

Georgia clinched the match with a straight-set by Bernstein over Brewer at the No. 5 position.

Conkic defeated the 70th-ranked Hunt, 6-1, 7-5 at the No. 3 position for UT's final point of the match. Conkic had a fantastic regular season for the Vols putting together an 18-2 mark in dual-match play, including a team-best 9-1 record in the SEC. The UT sophomore is currently on an 11-match win streak.

Garrapiz wrapped up the match with a straight-set win over Fago at the No. 2 spot. It is only the second career loss for Fago in 20 regular season SEC dual-matches.

The Vols return to action Friday afternoon at 3 p.m. in the quarterfinals of the SEC Tournament hosted this season by Auburn. The Vols will face the winner of Thursday's first round match between the No. 6 and 11 seeds. A link to live scoring can be found at UTsports.com.

No. 4 Georgia 5, No. 6 Tennessee 2
Singles
1. No. 8 John-Patrick Smith (UT) def. No. 10 Nate Schnugg (UGA) 6-4, 6-4
2. No. 64 Javier Garrapiz (UGA) def. Matteo Fago (UT) 6-3, 7-5
3. No. 33 Boris Conkic (UT) def. No. 70 Jamie Hunt (UGA) 6-1, 7-5
4. Josh Varela (UGA) def. Davey Sandgren (UT) 6-4, 6-3
5. Drake Bernstein (UGA) def. Matt Brewer (UT) 6-3, 6-3
6. Christian Vitulli (UGA) def. Christian Hansen (UT) 6-1, 6-0
Order of Finish: 6,1,4,5,3,2
Doubles
1. No. 7 Hunt/Schnugg (UGA) def. No. 5 Sandgren/Smith (UT) 8-4
2. No. 46 Conkic/Fago (UT) def. Bernstein/Garrapiz (UGA) 8-6
3. Malo/Vitulli (UGA) def. Brewer/Swartz (UT) 8-3
Order of Finish: 3,1,2

 

 

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