April 23, 2005
The No. 5-seed Tennessee men's tennis team won its third straight match at the SEC Tournament Saturday defeating regular season champion and the No. 3 team in the nation Ole Miss 4-2. Sophomore Kiril Tcherveniachki has clinched all three of UT wins with wins at No. 5 singles.
"It's obviously a huge win for us today beating a great Ole Miss squad that is the No. 1 seed and the No. 3 team in the nation," acting head coach Chris Mahony said. "We won the doubles point and we fought really hard on all six singles courts. Ole Miss threw everything they had at us at the end like I thought they would, but we stuck together as team and Kiril brought it home for us like he has the last three matches."
Tcherveniachki would drop the first set of his match against Jakob Klaeson. But just like Friday, the New Zealand native would rally and dominate the last two sets to win the match and give UT the victory. Tcherveniachki is now on a season high three match win streak. The UT sophomore can match his career long win streak of four with a victory tomorrow in the championship match.
Tennessee once again got off to a good start by capturing the doubles point. After Ole Miss won at No. 1 doubles, freshmen tandem Bobby Cameron and Kaden Hensel won at No. 3 doubles meaning the doubles point would come down to the No. 2 position. The UT duo of Mark Dietrich and Morgan Wilson were able to avenge a loss earlier this season to Fredrik Aarum and Erling Tveit by winning 8-5 to give the Vols the much sought after doubles point. Dietrich and Wilson have now won six consecutive doubles matches.
Ole Miss's star Catalin Gard would quickly tie the match with his victory over Dietrich 6-3, 6-3. But Morgan Wilson, another Vol who seems to be saving his best tennis for the end of the season, put the Vols back in front with an impressive straight sets win over Juan Pablo di Cesare 6-3, 6-2. Wilson has now won three of his last five SEC matches after dropping his first four.
After Ole Miss tied the match again, Cameron for the second straight day but the Vols in front for good. The first set of his match against Eric Claesson went to a tiebreaker, which Cameron won to take the set. The Lenoir City native would dominate the second set to take the match and give Tennessee a 3-2 lead.
The Vols will play in the championship match Sunday at 2 p.m. against the winner of the Florida - Georgia match. This marks Tennessee's fourth appearance in the SEC championship match. In its most previous appearance, UT knocked off Auburn 4-1 to capture the championship. Live stats for the championship match can be found at UTsports.com.
No. 26 Tennessee 4 No. 3 Ole Miss 2
1. No. 4 Catalin Gard (UM) def. No. 58 Mark Dietrich (UT) 6-3, 6-3
2. Bobby Cameron (UT) def. Eric Claesson (UM) 7-6, 6-2
3. Ockie Oosthuizen (UT) tied No. 94 Erling Tveit (UM) 7-6, 2-6, 3-3
4. Morgan Wilson (UT) def. Juan Pablo di Cesare (UM) 6-3, 6-2
5. Kiril Tcherveniachki (UT) def. Jakob Klaeson (UM) 4-6, 6-2, 6-1
6. Fredrik Aarum (UM) def. Kaden Hensel (UT) 6-1, 6-3
Order of Finish: 1,4,6,2,5*
1. No. 23 Claesson/Gard (UM) def. No. 11 Oosthuizen/Rogers (UT) 8-6
2. Dietrich/Wilson (UT) def. Aarum/Tveit (UM) 8-5
3. Cameron/Hensel (UT) def. Klaeson/ten Berge (UM) 8-5
Order of Finish: 1,3,2