MEN'S TENNIS: Gators edge FSU 4-3

TALLAHASSEE, FL --- The third-ranked University of Florida men's tennis team made it eight straight wins in the series as the Gators defeated the 41st-ranked Florida State Seminoles on Sunday afternoon, 4-3. With the win, the Gators improved to 4-0 on the season and 13-0 all-time against in-state opponents under fourth-year head coach Andy Jackson. The loss drops Florida State's record to 3-3 on the season.

The match, which lasted nearly four and half hours, played out similar to last year's in that the Gators took the victory with a win by Ryan Sherry on court six.

UF opened things by dropping the doubles point for the first time on the season. Florida's Ryan Sherry and Jordan Dolberg defeated Jonathas Sucupira and Sam Chang, 9-8 (4) at the bottom of the lineup, leaving the Gators needing a win on either of the remaining courts. However, FSU's Jeff Groslimond and Chris Westerhof narrowly defeated UF's Stefan Tell and Chris Brandi on court two. Seminoles Mat Cloer and Ytai Abougzir used the same score to defeat UF's Hamir Mirzadeh and Vladimir Obradovic on court one as the Gator duo was paired together for the first time in 2005.

In singles play the match was evened when Sucupira was forced to retire with UF's 47th-ranked Greg Ouellette leading the match 6-3, 1-0, on court four. Cloer put FSU back on top when he posted the first win over Mirzadeh on the year at the top of the order (6-3, 6-4). Brandi evened the match for the second time on the afternoon with a 6-3, 6-4 decision over Groslimond (ranked 91st nationally) on three. Obradovic (ranked 64th) put Florida on top for the first time on the afternoon with a 6-0, 7-6 (3) win over Abougzir on court two, while Westerhof rounded out the list of FSU winners with a 6-4, 7-6 (3) win over UF's 46th-ranked Nestor Briceno on court five to make it a 3-3 match.

As he did in the 2004 regular season meeting, Sherry provided the clincher on court six. This season Sherry defeated Sam Chang to keep UF's streak of having not lost to the Seminoles since 1997 intact. After winning the first set 6-1, Sherry was edged in the second set 6-7 (3). However, Sherry came away with a 6-0 win in the third set.

Florida remains on the road as the Gators travel to Champaign, Ill., for a Saturday, Feb. 12, match with fifth-ranked Illinois inside the Atkins Tennis Center at 6 p.m. The Gators will look to break the Illini's home match win streak, which stands at 36.

#3 Florida 4, #40 Florida State 3

Box Score

Singles

No. 1: Mat Cloer (FSU) d. Hamid Mirzadeh (UF) 6-3, 6-4

No. 2: #64 Vladimir Obradovic (UF) d. Ytai Abougzir (FSU) 6-0, 7-6 (3)

No. 3: #85 Chris Brandi (UF) d. #91 Jeff Groslimond (FSU) 6-3, 6-4

No. 4: #47 Greg Ouellette (UF) d. Jonathas Sucupira (FSU) 6-3, 1-0 (retire)

No. 5: Chris Westerhof (FSU) #46 Nester Briceno (UF) 6-4, 7-6 (3)

No. 6: Ryan Sherry (UF) d. Sam Chang (FSU) 6-1, 6-7 (3), 6-0

Order of Finish: 4, 1, 3, 2, 5, 6

Doubles:

No. 1: Cloer/Abougzir (FSU) Mirzadeh/Obradovic (UF) 9-7

No. 2: #32 Groslimond/Westerhof (FSU) d. Stefan Tell/Brandi (UF) 9-7

No. 3: Sherry/Jordan Dolberg (UF) d. Sucupira/Chang (FSU) 9-8 (4)

Order of Finish: 3, 2, 1


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