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Men's Tennis Headline

Seniors Florent Diep and Mike Alford playing doubles vs. Tennessee.

Thursday March 20, 2014No. 16 Florida Men's Tennis Hosts Auburn on Friday; Alabama on Sunday

Gainesville, Fla.

Seniors Florent Diep and Mike Alford playing doubles vs. Tennessee.

The No. 16 Florida men’s tennis team continues their SEC season at home and will take on Auburn on Friday at 5 p.m. and Alabama on Sunday at 1 p.m. at Linder Stadium at the Ring Tennis Complex.

 

Although UF leads AU 36-15 all-time, the Gators fell 4-0 at Auburn in 2013 and aim to fight back against the Tigers on Friday evening.

 

Florida defeated Alabama last spring, 4-1, in Tuscaloosa. Gators sophomore Gordon Watson notched a dominate 6-3, 6-3 win over the Tide’s Philippe Tsangarides at No. 5 singles in 2013. UF has not suffered a loss to Alabama since 2009 (5-0).

 

SEC Showdown: After finishing their 2013 SEC season under .500, Auburn boasts a 4-1 (.800) conference record so far this year. Alabama is currently 2-3 in SEC play heading into this weekend as Florida sits even at 2-2.

 

Records: Florida 7-6/2-2 SEC, Auburn 14-5/4-1 SEC, Alabama 9-9/2-3 SEC

 

Shelton Says: “I think the biggest thing is to just get better. We’ve been working to get better and we feel like we’re now competing at a pretty high level, but we have to get better so we can execute under pressure. Those were the things that really held us back from winning the match against Georgia – when the pressure was at its greatest, we played too defensively. This weekend, we’re looking forward to getting back out there and playing aggressively on those big points of the match and seizing those opportunities.”

 

Tough Competition: While the Gators currently own a 7-6 record on the year, all six losses have come to teams ranked in the top-12 nationally: No. 1 Ohio State, No. 3 UCLA, No. 4 Southern Cal, No. 10 Georgia No. 11 Notre Dame and No. 12 Texas A&M.

 

Nationally Ranked Gators: Three Florida singles players are ranked nationally: No. 82 freshman Elliott Orkin, No. 85 senior Spencer Newman and newly-ranked No. 106 sophomore Gordon Watson. Orkin and Watson represent the lone Gators duo as No. 11 in the national doubles rankings.

 

Follow the Gators: Live scoring for both matches will be available through GatorZone. Follow tomorrow’s match against Auburn here.

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