April 18, 2009

Courtesy of Georgia

ATHENS-----A season-high crowd of 1,060 watched the fourth-ranked Georgia men’s tennis team extend its home match winning streak to 60 with a 5-2 victory over sixth-ranked Tennessee Sunday.


The Bulldogs improved to 21-2 overall and won the Southeastern Conference Eastern Division title outright with a 10-1 league mark. Georgia went 13-0 during the regular season at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex. The Volunteers were denied a share of the crown and fell to 19-5, 8-3 in the SEC.


Georgia claimed a 1-0 lead by winning the doubles point. The No. 3 Bulldog team of Borja Malo and Christian Vitulli were the first to finish, defeating Matt Brewer and Bryan Swartz 8-3. The feature match at No. 1 pitted Georgia’s seventh-ranked Jamie Hunt and Nate Schnugg against fifth-ranked John-Patrick Smith and Davey Sandgren. The Hunt/Schnugg tandem clinched the point with an impressive 8-4 win. UT managed a win at No. 2 as the 46th-ranked duo of Boris Conkic and Matteo Fago beat Drake Bernstein and Javier Garrapiz 8-6. The Bulldogs are now 17-0 in matches when they win the doubles.


In singles, Vitulli quickly made it 2-0 when he dispatched Christian Hansen 6-1,6-0 at No. 6. Hansen was 8-1 at No. 6 entering the match.  The No. 1 contest was a top 10 matchup with eighth-ranked Smith recording a 6-4,6-4 win over 10th-ranked Schnugg. Georgia took a 3-1 lead when senior captain Josh Varela closed out Sandgren 6-3,6-3 at No. 4.


“Thanks to the big crowd for coming out today, it was an emotional rollercoaster for me with the senior ceremony and then settling in to my match,” said Varela who is now 28-8 this season including 12-2 at No. 4. “I was happy to get a point for the team and go out with a win in my last match here.”


Bernstein clinched the victory at No. 5 after a 6-3,6-3 win over Brewer at No. 5. It was his eighth straight win to give him a 28-10 record this season. The 32nd-ranked Conkic gave the Volunteers their second point with a 6-1,7-5 win over 70th-ranked Hunt at No. 3. Garrapiz provided the final win, a 6-3,7-5 victory over Fago at No. 2.


“This was a great win, they prepared for a big battle and the most impressive thing about this team is that they have not had a bad match this year,” said Georgia coach Manuel Diaz. “I was pleased with how we played doubles, it gave us the early momentum. Christian’s quick win in singles kept it going. It was great to see a huge crowd too.”


#4 Georgia 5, #6 Tennessee 2


1. #7 Jamie Hunt/Nate Schnugg (UGA) def. #5 John-Patrick Smith/Davey Sandgren (TENN) 8-4

2. #46 Boris Conkic/Matteo Fago (TENN) def. Drake Bernstein/Javier Garrapiz (UGA) 8-6

3. Borja Malo/Christian Vitulli (UGA) def. Matt Brewer/Bryan Swartz (TENN) 8-3


1. #8 John-Patrick Smith (TENN) def. #10 Nate Schnugg (UGA) 6-4, 6-4

2. #64 Javier Garrapiz (UGA) def. Matteo Fago (TENN) 6-3, 7-5

3. #32 Boris Conkic (TENN) def. #70 Jamie Hunt (UGA) 6-1, 7-5

4. Josh Varela (UGA) def. Davey Sandgren (TENN) 6-4, 6-3

5. Drake Bernstein (UGA) def. Matt Brewer (TENN) 6-3, 6-3

6. Christian Vitulli (UGA) def. Christian Hansen (TENN) 6-1, 6-0

Order of finish: Doubles (3,1,2); Singles (6,1,4,5,3,2)


#6 Tennessee 19-5 (8-3 SEC); #4 Georgia 21-2 (10-1 SEC)

Georgia extends home match winning streak to 60 with today's victory.

Official: Sharon Wright T-3:10 A-1060 (season-high crowd)