#1 Georgia Tennis rolls into SEC Tourney

ATHENS ­ The No. 1-ranked Georgia tennis team (22-0, 11-0 SEC) will travel to Tuscaloosa, Alabama for the 2006 Southeastern Conference tournament April 20-23. The team is seeded first in the competition and will receive a first-round bye.

The Bulldogs¹ first postseason action will take place Friday at 3 p.m. EST in the quarterfinal round against the winner of No. 8-seeded Auburn (12-9, 4-7 SEC) and No.9-seeded Alabama (13-11, 4-7 SEC). In regular-season play earlier this year, Georgia defeated both teams by scores of 5-2 and 6-1, respectively.

³I think our focus is going to be good and we expect to have a solid tournament,² said Georgia head coach Manuel Diaz. ³Our guys took Sunday off nd had a light practice on Monday, then on Tuesday we turned it up a bit and we had a pretty good practice. I think our players are looking forward to post season play. I reminded them again this week that winning the SEC Tournament was one of our main goals coming in to the season. I think we are really starting to Œzero in¹.²

The Bulldogs capped a pristine regular season record last weekend when they defeated the Tennessee Volunteers, 5-2 in Knoxville. It was the first time in Georgia men¹s tennis history that a squad went undefeated through the regular season dual matches and mid-season tournaments, as Georgia captured the 2006 ITA Team Indoor National Championship.

The Bulldogs are led by No. 2-ranked junior John Isner (Greensboro, N.C.) and senior tri-captain Colin Purcell (Louisville, Ky.) both of whom posted perfect 11-0 records in SEC dual-match play. In addition, Isner holds a 20-match singles win streak, while Purcell holds a 15- match unbeaten run of his own. Sophomore Luis Flores (Xalapa, Mexico), ranked No. 20 in the nation, has also pitched in a 10-match win streak.

Georgia has had very good success in past SEC Tournaments, reaching the finals 12 times in the event¹s 16-year history, and winning the title a total of five times. The Bulldogs are seeking their second SEC championship in three years. The team¹s last crown came at the 2004 tournament in Knoxville. Last year the tournament was held in Athens, where the third-seeded Bulldogs fell to second-seeded Florida in the semifinals.

The SEC tournament semifinals will be played Saturday at 3 p.m. EST with the finals taking place Sunday at 3 p.m. EST. Live scoring as well as match notes and other tournament information can be found at the SEC Tournament headquarters page at www.rolltide.com

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