LEXINGTON, Ky. - No. 31 Anthony Rossi picked up one of the biggest wins of his career on Sunday afternoon as he defeated No. 7 KU Singh of Georgia in two sets as No. 4 Kentucky was outlasted in a tight 4-2 loss by No. 6 UGA.
The loss was Kentucky's second-straight and marks just the second time all year that UK has lost back-to-back matches. With the loss, Kentucky falls to 16-6 overall and is now in second place in the Southeastern Conference East Division, tied with Tennessee with a 4-3 mark in conference play.
These two teams met back in mid-February at the National Indoors in Seattle, Wash., as UK completed a massive comeback to down then sixth-ranked UGA. In that match, similar to today's match, UK was defeated in the doubles point.
UGA picked up wins on courts one and two to claim the win over Kentucky in doubles. No. 5 Hernus Pieters and Ben Wagland picked up an early break on Tom Jomby and Kevin Lai and the rest of the match held to form as Pieters and Wagland took the match 8-6.
In the other match that finished, Alejandro Gomez and Ryuji Hirooka fell to No. 39 Nathan Pasha and Garrett Brasseaux 8-6. Gomez and Hirooka got off to a strong start, and were broken for the first time at 6-5 as the Bulldogs held on to win 8-6.
The third doubles match was stopped at 6-6.
In singles, Kentucky quickly fell down 2-0 in the match as Alejandro Gomez lost 6-2, 6-2 to No. 39 Nathan Pasha. Gomez dropped serve a handful of times in the march and held strong in the third before Pasha picked up the double-break lead at 4-2 in the final set.
Kentucky would get on the board when No. 31 Anthony Rossi defeated No. 7 KU Singh in one of the biggest wins of his career. With the win, Rossi picked up his 98th-career win, and now sits just two shy of becoming the 15th player in UK history to collect 100-career wins. Rossi broke Singh to start the match and go up 3-0 in the opening set, and then broke at 5-3 to close out the match.
On court five, No. 101 Hernus Pieters knocked off Kevin Lai 6-1, 6-2 to hand Lai his first-career singles loss for Kentucky and his first-career SEC loss as well.
Tom Jomby pulled Kentucky to within 3-2 with a 7-6 (4), 3-6, 6-2 win on court two over Ben Wagland. After dropping the second set be being broken twice, Jomby started out the third set with a bang and broke Wagland right off the bat to take the 3-0 lead where he would then cruise to the third-set win.
The match was clinched on court four as Austin Smith outlasted Grant Roberts in a tight three-setter 7-6 (4), 3-6, 6-3.
Kentucky returns to action on Friday afternoon against No. 29 Alabama at 2:00 p.m. ET at the Hilary J. Boone Varsity Tennis Center.
No. 6 Georgia 4, No. 4 Kentucky 2
Hilary J. Boone Varsity Tennis Center - Lexington, Ky.
Sunday, March 24, 2013
Doubles (Order of finish 1, 2*)
1- No. 5 Hernus Pieters/Ben Wagland (UGA) def. No. 23 Tom Jomby/Kevin Lai (UK) 8-6
2- No. 39 Nathan Pasha/Garrett Brasseaux (UGA) def. Ryuji Hirooka/Alejandro Gomez (UK) 8-6
3- No. 53 KU Singh/Austin Smith (UGA) vs. Grant Roberts/Anthony Rossi (UK) 6-6 (Abd.)
Singles: Order of finish: 3, 1, 5, 2, 4*)
1- No. 31 Anthony Rossi (UK) def. No. 7 KU Singh (UGA) 6-3, 6-3
2- No. 32 Tom Jomby (UK) def. No. 71 Ben Wagland (UGA) 7-6 (5), 3-6, 6-2
3- No. 39 Nathan Pasha (UGA) def. Alejandro Gomez (UK) 6-2, 6-2
4- Austin Smith (UGA) def. Grant Roberts (UK) 7-6 (4), 3-6, 6-3
5- No. 101 Hernus Pieters (UGA) def. Kevin Lai (UK) 6-1, 6-2
6- Garrett Brasseaux (UGA) vs. Beck Pennington (UK) 6-6 (1-2) (Abd.)
For continuing coverage of UK men's tennis, log on to UKathletics.com.