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Saturday January 26, 2013Florida Sweeps St. John's, 7-0, to Open ITA Kick-Off Weekend

Gainesville, Fla.

The Florida men’s tennis team earned its second-straight 7-0 victory on Saturday, defeating St. John’s in the first round of the 2013 ITA Kick-Off Weekend at Linder Stadium at Ring Tennis Complex.

 

With the win, the Gators improved to 3-0 on the season and advance to Sunday’s Championship match at 1 p.m. with a chance to earn a berth in the ITA National Indoors next month in Seattle. Florida will face the winner of the UNC-Wilmington and South Alabama match, scheduled to be played Saturday afternoon at Linder Stadium.

 

“Tomorrow we know we’re going to be pushed with whatever team wins [this afternoon], South Alabama or UNCW,” said head coach Bryan Shelton. “We’ve got to be ready. We know it’s coming. We’re not going to just coast through the whole season.”

 

Florida won the doubles point for the third time in three matches, winning at the No. 1 and 2 positions. On court one, the duo of Billy Federhofer and Gordon Watson jumped out to a 7-0 lead before winning 8-1 against SJU’s Vasko Mladenov and Hugo Morth, who ranked 52nd in the nation entering the match.

 

“We played well today,” said Federhofer. “We didn’t do anything special, but everything was really solid. Playing with Gordon’s fun because he loves doubles and he’s really aggressive at the net … we complement each other pretty well.”

 

Stephane Piro and Bob van Overbeek, playing at No. 2 doubles, beat the Red Storm’s Valentin Mihai and Mike Lampa, 8-3. The Gator pair earned a break at 5-3 and won the final four games of the set to clinch the doubles point.

 

At No. 3 doubles, Florent Diep and Luke Johnson led SJU’s Mark Mozer and Michael-John Every, 5-4, when play was halted.

 

“I was impressed with how well St. John’s came out in the doubles,” said Coach Shelton. “I thought they came out and were firing right away from the very first point. I was also impressed with our guys, when they came with some pressure we didn’t back down. We played extremely well at No. 1 doubles, just very solid. Billy and Gordon made very few unforced errors and executed at the net and made good choices.

 

“Steph and Bob were able to gather themselves midway through the proset and reeled off four games in a row to get that point. That was great.”

 

In singles, Florida got an early point as Mladenov had to retire due to injury against Diep, who led 4-0 at No. 1 singles. Johnson, playing on court six, won 6-2, 6-0 over Every to push the Gators lead to 3-0.

 

At No. 5 singles, Federhofer won the first set, 6-2, over Mozer and cruised in the second set, 6-0, to clinch the team victory for Florida.

 

“I think we all competed really hard today and we got it done,” said Federhofer. “We saw a lot of positives today, but we also saw a lot of things we can do better tomorrow, so hopefully we’ll be able to execute that tomorrow.

 

“That was my first [clinching match] this year. I love doing that, but I just want the team to win. It’s nice that I was fortunate enough to be able to, but as long as we win I don’t care who wins.”

 

The Gators got two more points from van Overbeek and Piro who finished a minute apart, who won at No. 2 and 3 singles, respectively. Van Overbeek beat Mihai, 6-3, 6-2, while Piro beat Lampa, 6-2, 6-2. Gordon Watson completed the shutout with a 6-4, 6-1 win over Morth on court four.

 

“I liked the way St. John’s came to the net and attacked and forced us to defend a little bit,” said Coach Shelton. “That’s good for our guys to see some different styles of play. I thought we did a good job of just staying tough out there mentally.”

 

 

2013 University of Florida Men’s Tennis

Linder Stadium at Ring Tennis Complex

Gainesville, Florida

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Doubles

FLORIDA

vs

St. John's

Winner

 

Score (match length)

Billy Federhofer

Vasko Mladenov (52)

No. 1 -

Gordon Watson

 

Hugo Morth (52)

UF

 

8-1 (:30)

Stephane Piro

Valentin Mihai

No. 2 -

Bob van Overbeek

 

Mike Lampa

*UF

 

8-3 (:36)

Florent Diep

Mark Mozer

No. 3 -

Luke Johnson

 

Michael-John Every

DNF

 

UF led 5-4

Singles

FLORIDA

vs

St. John's

Winner

 

Score (match length)

No. 1 -

Florent Diep (26)

 

Vasko Mladenov

UF

 

4-0 (ret. Injured)

No. 2 -

Bob van Overbeek (51)

 

Valentin Mihai

UF

 

6-3, 6-2 (1:13)

No. 3 -

Stephane Piro

 

Michael Lampa

UF

 

6-2, 6-2 (1:14)

No. 4 -

Gordon Watson (118)

 

Hugo Morth

UF

 

6-4, 6-1 (1:31)

No. 5 -

Billy Federhofer

 

Mark Mozer

*UF

 

6-2, 6-0 (1:06)

No. 6 -

Luke Johnson

 

Michael-John Every

UF

 

6-2, 6-0 (1:00)

FINAL SCORE:

Florida - 7

SJU - 0-2

* Clinched victory

Records:

Florida 3-0

SJU - 0-3

Order of Finish:

Doubles: 1, 2

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

Attendance:

156

 

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