Carvalho, Pinto Advance in Qualifying at ITA

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. - Mississippi State tennis players Luiz Carvalho and Jose-Carlos Pinto won their respective matches Monday during the opening day of play of the qualifying rounds at the Icy Hot/ITA All-American Championships. The All-American, being held at Chattanooga's Champions Club, is the first major of the college tennis year.

Carvalho and Pinto are gunning for one of the 64 spots in the All-American's main draw, which begins Thursday. They must each win three qualifying matches to advance to the main draw.

Things looked dim early on for both Bulldogs Monday, but both would overcome early deficits to pull out their respective triumphs.

Pinto, ranked 110th nationally, found himself down 5-2 in the first set against Florida State's Jeff Groslimond, but the junior fought off a set point and rallied to win 7-5, 6-4. He will meet Ohio State's Scott Green at 9 a.m. ET in Tuesday's second round.

Carvalho dropped his first set with Oklahoma's Alexei Ivanov in a tiebreaker but turned things by cruising 6-2 in the second set. After getting down 3-2 and a service break in the third, the MSU senior won the last four games of the match for a 6-7(4), 6-2, 6-3 win. He will meet Georgia's 60th-ranked John Isner in Tuesday's second round at 11 a.m. ET.

"Luiz and Jose both did a good job today," MSU head coach Sylvain Guichard said. "They both worked hard to get back into their matches after getting down early."

Ranked 13th nationally together in doubles, Carvalho and Pinto are already entered into the All-American's 32-team main draw of doubles, which also begins later this week.

Chattanooga, Tenn. - 10/4/04

First Round ­ Luiz Carvalho (MSU) def. Alexei Ivanov (Oklahoma) 6-7(4), 6-2, 6-3; #110 Jose-Carlos Pinto (MSU) def. Jeff Groslimond (Florida State) 7-5, 6-4.

(numbers preceding names are current national rankings)

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