May 12, 2002
KNOXVILLE, Tenn.-- The No. 2-seeded Tennessee tennis team defeated visiting Virginia Tech 4-0 Sunday afternoon at the Varsity Tennis Center, to advance to College Station, Texas for next Saturday's NCAA round of 16. The Vols' (20-6) win secured their third straight 20-win season and their tenth ever sweet 16 appearance and their third straight.
The Vols began the match by winning their ninth straight doubles point, winning the first two completed matches. The tandem of Adam Carey and Peter Handoyo struck first, capturing their 12th victory in 13 tries this season in their 8-5 win over Dovor Dupljak and Saber Kadiri at No. 2. The pair of Andy Crews and Mark Dietrich then handed the Vols the doubles tally, winning their fourth straight clinching point in an 8-4 win over Francis Hout and Michael Kurz at No. 3. "Keeping our streak of doubles points going is very good for our guys," UT head coach Michael Fancutt said. "It gives us confidence and puts a little fear into the hearts of our competitors. Chirs Mahony (UT assistant coach) has worked really hard with our No. 3 doubles team and now they are starting to dominate." The Hokies (17-8) did get a doubles win however, when Andres Laulund and Stephane Rod upset Tennessee's No. 22-ranked pair of Simon Rea and Mario Toledo 8-5 at No. 1.
The Vols were once again simply too tough in singles play Sunday, winning the first three completed matches to finish off the Hokies. The Vols' scoring in singles has been primarily top heavy as of late, with most of the scoring coming from the top three players. The Vols No. 1 and 2 players did score again Sunday, but the Vols also got a lift from sophomore Wade Orr, who in defeating Virginia Tech's Grant Reynolds 6-1, 6-1, scored his first point since clinching the Vols' first victory over Georgia April 13. "It felt really good to score and help the team out," Orr said. "This will be really good for my confidence going into College Station."
The Vols' senior Adam Carey was the next to score, and for the first time in five matches, it was not to clinch the match. The southpaw from Brisbane, Australia won his ninth straight match in his win over Stephane Rod 6-4, 6-2 at No. 3. Fellow senior Peter Handoyo, who is now considered Mr. Automatic for the Vols' tennis corp after winning 25 of 27 matches thus far this spring, came through once again Sunday. Handoyo, who is usually one of the first players off the court, clinched the match today for the Big Orange in what was his last home match of his stellar Tennessee career. The seventh-ranked Handoyo won his ninth straight match against a ranked player, when he defeated No. 70 Saber Kadiri 6-2, 6-4 to give the Vols win number 20 on the season. "It was great to finish my career at home with a doubles win and a singles clincher," Handoyo said. "The past four years I have worked really hard and now it is paying off. Now we just have to keep getting better for next week."
"This was a great win today," Fancutt said. "Our goal this week was to get better each match, which I feel we've done, and now we can look forward to Texas. It was great to see Wade Orr do well today. Him winning will give him and our team confidence knowing that we are deep and that each player can step up when needed. Virginia Tech was a really good team, they played really well starting out in the doubles and they are a very spirited team. When you are the No. 2 seed, everybody is going to be gunning at you, but I felt our guys handled it well yesterday and today. We won both matches 4-0, you can't really ask for more than that."
The Vols will begin play in the NCAA round of 16 Saturday, May 18 against Texas. The Longhorns defeated Virginia Commonwealth Sunday to advance and meet the Vols. The Vols and the Longhorns have met 11 times with Texas winning seven of the meetings. Ironically, the last time the two teams met was in the NCAA round of 16 in 1993, where Texas eliminated the Vols with a 5-1 win. "Texas is a really good team," Fancutt said. "They have a great player at No. 1 (Jean Simon, ranked No. 17 nationally) and we are also going to their region of the country. It should be a good match." The NCAA round of 16 will take place at Texas A&M University in College Station. Times for the event will be released Monday.
|No. 2 Tennessee 4, Virginia Tech 0|
|1) (7) Peter Handoyo (UT) def. (70) Saber Kadiri (VT) 6-2, 6-4*|
|2) (18) Mario Toledo (UT) def. Francis Hout (VT) Suspended (Tied 6-6)|
|3) (77) Adam Carey (UT) def. Stephane Rod (VT) 6-4, 6-2|
|4) (82) Mark Dietrich (UT) vs. Davon Dupljak (VT) Suspended (VT led 7-5, 0-1)|
|5) Simon Rea (UT) vs. Andres Laulund (VT) Suspended (UT led 6-3, 3-5)|
|6) Wade Orr (UT) def. Grant Reynolds (VT) 6-1, 6-1|
|Finishing order: 6, 3, 1*|
|1) Laulund/Rod (VT) def. (22) Toledo/Rea (UT) 8-5|
|2) Carey/Handoyo (UT) def. Dupljak/Kadiri (VT) 8-5|
|3) Crews/Dietrich (UT)def. Hout/Kurz (VT) 8-4*|
|Finishing order: 2, 1, 3*|