BATON ROUGE, La. --- The fourth-ranked Georgia men’s tennis team won its seventh straight match and 11th out of the last 12 with a 4-0 victory over No. 32 LSU Friday afternoon at W.T. ‘Dub’ Robinson Stadium in Baton Rouge.
With the win, the Bulldogs improve to 16-4 on the season and 8-1 in conference play, keeping pace atop the Southeastern Conference standings with three matches to go. LSU falls to 11-9.
“It feels great to get this one today,” said head coach Manuel Diaz. “I think our guys really came out and responded well. We played a good doubles point, even at No. 3 where we lost, the guys were down two breaks and fought back to even it. It was close. I am very happy with our focus right now. We did a good job coming down here and getting a win on the road – LSU is a tough team to beat. Our guys are turning their attention to the next match because we’ll need to be ready to go again.”
The Bulldogs took the early 1-0 lead by way of the doubles point, which went Georgia’s way for the 14th time in 19 attempts in 2013 (the team did not play doubles vs. Mississippi State). After LSU got an 8-6 win at No. 3 for Chris Simpson and Boris Arias over Eric Diaz and Marco Nunez, the Bulldogs responded by taking the remaining two courts and the point. First was 41st-ranked Nathan Pasha and Garrett Brasseaux with an 8-4 decision over Stefan Szacinski and Tam Trinh at No. 2, followed by the clinching win for No. 6 Hernus Pieters and Ben Wagland as they took down Roger Anderson and Olivier Borsos, 8-5, at the top spot.
Georgia kept the momentum going in singles, winning four of six first sets before senior KU Singh’s speedy 6-2, 6-2 win over 82nd-ranked Simpson at No. 1 gave the Bulldogs the 2-0 advantage. For No. 11 Singh, it was the 15th singles win of the season and team-leading 11th over a nationally-ranked opponent.
Just minutes later, it was the freshman Wagland who used a 6-3, 6-3 win over Borsos at No. 3 to push the lead to 3-0, as the two-time SEC Freshman of the Week improves to 21-7 on the season and 13-4 in dual matches. The clinch came from Pieters at No. 5, as he dropped Trinh 6-1, 6-2 at No. 5 to seal the 4-0 road shutout for UGA. It was the junior’s second clinch of the season as he improves to 21-9 on the season. The remaining three matches were abandoned.
“I thought KU and Ben did a great job of setting Hernus up for the clinch,” Diaz said. “Overall it was a competitive match, but our top three guys were able to get quick wins. We could’ve done better at some spots because we are capable of doing that. LSU played well at Nos. 4 and 6, so we’ll need to do a better job there.”
Georgia is back in action on Sunday when it plays its final road match of the regular season, heading to Arkansas for a 2 p.m. ET meeting with the 53rd-ranked Razorbacks at the Billingsley Tennis Center in Fayetteville. Live scoring will be available on Georgiadogs.com.
#4 Georgia 4, #32 LSU 0
1. #11 KU Singh (UG) def. #82 Chris Simpson (LSU) 6-2, 6-2
2. Stefan Szacinski (LSU) vs. #53 Nathan Pasha (UG) 2-6, 2-4, unfinished
3. #64 Ben Wagland (UG) def. Olivier Borsos (LSU) 6-3, 6-4
4. Mark Bowtell (LSU) vs. Austin Smith (UG) 6-4, 5-4, unfinished
5. Hernus Pieters (UG) def. Tam Trinh (LSU) 6-1, 6-2
6. Harrison Kennedy (LSU) vs. Garrett Brasseaux (UG) 6-3, 5-5, unfinished
1. Hernus Pieters/Ben Wagland (UG) def. #6 Roger Anderson/Olivier Borsos (LSU) 8-5
2. #41 Nathan Pasha/Garrett Brasseaux (UG) def. Stefan Szacinski/Tam Trinh (LSU) 8-4
3. Chris Simpson/Boris Arias (LSU) def. Eric Diaz/Marco Nunez (UG) 8-6
Georgia 16-4 (8-1); National ranking #4
LSU 11-9 (3-6); National ranking #32
Order of finish: Doubles (3,2,1); Singles (1,3,5)