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Friday March 23, 2012No. 11 Men's Tennis Falls to No. 12 Mississippi State, 4-3

Gainesville, Fla.

The No. 11 Florida men’s tennis team came up short on yet another tight 4-3 decision, falling to No. 12 Mississippi State on Friday night. After a weather delay interrupted the doubles action for roughly an hour and a half, the Gators could never overtake the Bulldogs after falling behind early in the match.

 

“Congratulations to Coach [Per] Nilsson,” said head coach Andy Jackson. “I know that they deserve it. They played better than we did. It’s a tough time for us, but I frankly saw some positive things that we’re going to try to build on.”

 

Mississippi State (13-4, 4-1 SEC) took an early lead after pulling out a tough doubles point. MSU’s Louis Cant and Malte Stropp, ranked 24th in the country, beat the Gators’ Tripper Carleton (Naples, Fla.) and Michael Alford (Tampa, Fla.) at the No. 2 position, 8-6. Florida then earned a victory on court three, as Spencer Newman (Miami, Fla.) and Bob van Overbeek (Boca Raton, Fla.) won 8-6 over the Bulldogs’ Zach White and Ethan Wilkinson.

 

The doubles point came down to court one, where UF’s eighth-ranked pair of Billy Federhofer (North Miami, Fla.) and Nassim Slilam (Paris, France) faced Mississippi State’s George Coupland and Artem Ilyushin. After falling behind 3-0 early, Federhofer and Slilam earned two breaks and took a 5-4 lead. The MSU duo bounced right back and earned a break of their own and held serve to close out the match, 8-6.

 

Mississippi State pushed their lead to 2-0 after Stropp defeated Carleton at No. 3 singles, 6-1, 6-4, but Newman got a point back for the Gators with a 6-3, 6-2 win on court four over No. 36-ranked Coupland.

 

Ilyushin, ranked 14th in the nation, extended MSU’s lead to 3-1 overall, beating van Overbeek, 6-2, 6-3, at the top singles position. Minutes later, Slilam pulled Florida within one point once again, taking down James Chaudry, 6-2, 6-2, at No. 2 singles.

 

The match was decided on court five, where Florida’s Florent Diep (Paris, France) took on MSU’s Cant. After Cant claimed the first set, Diep jumped out to an early 3-0 lead in the second set but couldn’t hold on, eventually losing in a tiebreak, 6-4, 7-6 (3).

 

Federhofer won the remaining match on court six against Mississippi State’s White, but it took two tiebreak sets and a super tiebreak third set to decide the outcome. After Federhofer took the first set, White won the tiebreak in the second before Federhofer won the super tiebreak and the match, 7-6 (7), 6-7 (3), 1-0 (10-X).

 

Florida hits the road for their next match, traveling to Oxford, Miss., to take on Ole Miss on Sunday at 2 p.m.

 

2012 University of Florida Men’s Tennis

Linder Stadium at Ring Tennis Complex

Gainesville, Florida

Friday, March 23, 2012

Doubles

FLORIDA

vs

Mississippi St.

Winner

 

Score (match length)

Billy Federhofer (8)

George Coupland

No. 1 -

Nassim Slilam (8)

 

Artem Ilyushin

MSU*

 

8-6 (1:09)

Tripper Carleton

Louis Cant (24)

No. 2 -

Michael Alford

 

Malte Stropp (24)

MSU

 

8-6 (:47)

Spencer Newman

Zach White

No. 3 -

Bob van Overbeek

 

Ethan Wilkinson

UF

 

8-6 (:53)

Singles

FLORIDA

vs

Mississippi St.

Winner

 

Score (match length)

No. 1 -

Bob van Overbeek (61)

 

Artem Ilyushin (14)

MSU

 

6-2, 6-3 (1:36)

No. 2 -

Nassim Slilam (56)

 

James Chaudry

UF

 

6-2, 6-2 (1:39)

No. 3 -

Tripper Carleton (57)

 

Malte Stropp (113)

MSU

 

6-1, 6-4 (1:15)

No. 4 -

Spencer Newman (93)

 

George Coupland (36)

UF

 

6-3, 6-2 (1:28)

No. 5 -

Florent Diep

 

Louis Cant (37)

MSU*

 

6-4, 7-6 (3) (2:03)

No. 6 -

Billy Federhofer

 

Zach White

UF

 

7-6 (7), 6-7 (3), 14-12 (2:39) 

FINAL SCORE:

Florida - 3

Mississippi St. - 4

* Clinched victory

Records:

Florida (9-7, 2-3 SEC)

Mississippi St. (13-4, 4-1 SEC)

Order of Finish:

Doubles: 2, 3, 1

Singles: 3, 4, 1, 2, 5, 6

Attendance:

216

 

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