May 15, 2010

*Courtesy of Georgia Athletics


ATHENS, Ga. - The 12th-ranked Georgia men's tennis team opened the NCAA Tournament with a 4-0 win over UNC Greensboro Saturday at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex. The Bulldogs (18-7) will face Florida State Sunday at 2 p.m. for a berth in the NCAA Championships beginning May 21 in Athens.

With a win Sunday, 11th-seeded Georgia will advance to the Round of 16 for the seventh straight year.

"Our guys have been working very hard, but until you get into action you don't really know what's going to happen," said Georgia head coach Manuel Diaz. "We played the best we have all year today in terms of doing things that we have to do to win--we were sharp, we were serving well, and we were aggressive. I couldn't be happier right now.

"I know it's going to be tough tomorrow, but we're really playing well right now. We're not looking at the round of 16 at all, we're just trying to play a good match tomorrow. Tomorrow is going to take another great effort."

Georgia rolled to wins at Nos. 1 and 2 doubles to take the early 1-0 lead. The 32nd-ranked tandem of Javier Garrapiz and Nate Schnugg downed Orcun Seyrek and Kyle Eddins, 8-3, then Jamie Hunt and Christian Vitulli blanked Timion Meijs and William John, 8-0, at No. 2 to clinch the point for the Bulldogs.

"We came out really clean, Javy and I were striking the ball the best we have been all season," Schnugg said. "As a team, I thought we played very well in doubles. In singles, we took care of business and just tried to get off the courts as fast as we could."

Schnugg extended the lead to 2-0 in singles as he cruised past Jacob Wright, 6-1, 6-1 at No. 2, then Garrapiz beat Seyrek, 6-0, 6-1, at No. 1. Christian Vitulli clinched his third match of the season for the Bulldogs at No. 5, 6-1, 6-1 over Eddins.

Matches at Nos. 3, 4 and 6 were suspended with Georgia winning the first set on two of the courts.

"We have really been practicing well the last week which gave us a lot of confidence heading into this weekend," Vitulli said. "We expect to get to the round of 16 every year, but FSU is a really great team."

Florida State defeated Boise State 4-0 earlier Saturday. Georgia and the Seminoles both were in the round of 16 last year.

UNC Greensboro ends its season with a 17-6 record.