URBANA, Ill. - The Virginia men's tennis team continued to shine at the NCAA Individual Championships during day four of the event at the Atkins Tennis Center. Jarmere Jenkins (College Park, Ga.) advanced to the singles semifinals and the pair of Jenkins and Mac Styslinger (Birmingham, Ala.) reached the doubles semifinals.
Jenkins is the first men's tennis player to win the NCAA Team Championship and reach both the singles and doubles semifinals in the same season since 2001. That year Matias Boeker of Georgia became the third player of the modern era (since 1977) to win the NCAA Tennis Triple Crown (Team Championship, Singles Champion and Doubles Champion).
Jenkins, the singles tournament's No. 3 seed, advanced to the semifinals with a 6-3, 6-2 victory over Soren Hess-Olesen of Texas. He becomes the fifth Cavalier
to reach the NCAA semifinals, joining Brian Vahaly (2001), Somdev Devvarman (2006-08), Sanam Singh (2009) and Michael Shabaz (2011).
The players were tied at 1-1 in the first set when rain hit the Khan Outdoor Tennis Complex and play was moved indoors. Jenkins then used a break midway through the first set to win it, 6-3. In the second set, Jenkins broke Hess-Olesen in the first game and again in the fifth game to take a 4-1 lead. He held serve to close out the 6-3, 6-2 victory.
will play No. 9-16 seed Sebastian Fanselow of Pepperdine in the semifinals. Jenkins defeated Fanselow 6-2, 6-1 in the final of the ITA Indoor Intercollegiate Championships in November. The other semifinal is between Blaz Rola of Ohio State and Japie de Klerk of Tulsa.
"I was able to stay focused and really put some pressure on him," said Jenkins. "I felt good during the first set and really carried that momentum into the second set. It feels great to be in both the singles and doubles semifinals, which I know is a great accomplishment. My body is holding up well and I am excited to play again tomorrow."
In doubles, the fourth-seeded duo of Jenkins and Styslinger
downed the Florida team of Bob van Overbeek and Stephane Piro 7-6(5), 6-4. The teams exchanged one break each in the first set before going to a tiebreaker that the Cavaliers won 7-5. Each team held serve for the first nine games of the second set before the Virginia pair broke to close out the victory. Jenkins and Styslinger are the fifth Cavalier team to reach the semifinals.
Jenkins and Styslinger will play second-seeded Henrique Cunha and Raphael Hemmeler of Duke. The teams have already met three times this season with the Blue Devil pair winning two of the first three matches. The other semifinal is between third-seeded Jonas Lutjen and Nik Scholtz of Ole Miss and the unseeded team of Chris Camillone and David Holiner of Texas.
"It is great to see what Jarmere is doing and it is cool to just be a part of it," said Styslinger. "He is playing out of his mind right now. We have been playing great doubles and look forward to another good match with the Duke team tomorrow. We know them well, so we should have a good game plan."