TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – With the Florida sunshine providing a perfect backdrop for competition, the 25th-ranked Texas A&M men’s tennis team could not overcome the heat No. 16 Florida State brought to the court as the Seminoles remained undefeated at home winning a nearly five and a half hour battle with the Aggies, 6-1, Sunday afternoon at the Scott Speicher Tennis Center.
FSU (9-1) recorded its third-straight win over a ranked opponent and gained momentum early in the dual match by securing the doubles point. Texas A&M’s Conor Pollock (San Antonio, Texas) and Chris Chirico (Philadelphia, Pa.) won their second consecutive outing at the No. 2 line over Florida State’s Maciek Sykut and Sam Chang, 8-5, which gave the Aggies a 1-0 edge in doubles play. The Seminoles later evened the count with the doubles combination of Drew Bailey and Brad Mixson defeating Kayvon Karimi (Dallas, Texas) and Matt Bain (Georgetown, Texas), 8-6, at No. 3. The No. 26-ranked duo of Jean-Yves Aubone and Clint Bowles clinched the doubles point for the Seminoles by winning the tiebreaker over A&M’s top doubles team of Austin Krajicek (Brandon, Fla.) and Wil Spencer (Ponce de Leon, Fla.), 9-8 (3).
“We had some really close matches in doubles today,” Texas A&M head coach Steve Denton said. “We had a chance in the tiebreaker at No. 1, but we played a little tentative and things did not go our way. The momentum really changed in FSU’s favor.”
The Seminoles followed up with five of six victories in singles play. No. 27-ranked Conor Pollock lost a hard-fought three-setter to No. 35-ranked Aubone, 6-4, 2-6, 7-6 (4), at the top of the lineup, while Chris Chirico was the only A&M player to pull out a victory as he downed Florida State’s Chris Cloer, 6-3, 6-4, at the No. 4 line. Chirico is currently on a two-match win streak with a straight-set win in A&M’s 4-3 upset of No. 10 Duke on Friday.
“We struggled to return serves under faster court conditions today,” Denton said. “All of our singles matches were pretty tight, but the difference was they attacked more than we did. Overall, I was pleased with our doubles play and our guys were really fighting hard out there. We will put this match behind us and look forward to hosting two quality opponents this week at home.”
For the first time in over a month, the Aggies (4-4) return home to College Station and will begin a four-match homestand at the George P. Mitchell Tennis Center with No. 37 Old Dominion on Thursday, March 6 at 6 p.m. and No. 46 TCU on Saturday, March 8 at 11:30 a.m.
On The Radio…Listen to the Steve Denton Radio Show every Monday evening at 4:15 p.m. (CT) on Chip Howard’s SportsTalk broadcast live on KZNE 1150 AM The Zone in College Station. Denton joins Chip Howard for the only college tennis coach’s radio show in the nation. Each week, the duo will recap and preview matches for the nationally-ranked Aggies. The weekly radio show airs from February through the NCAA Championships and can also be heard worldwide on the Internet at: www.KZNE.com.
(16) FLORIDA STATE 6, (25) TEXAS A&M 1
March 2, 2008
Scott Speicher Tennis Center
at Tallahassee, Fla.
No. 1 (35) Jean-Yves Aubone (Florida State) def. (27) Conor Pollock (Texas A&M), 6-4, 2-6, 7-6 (4).
No. 2 Clint Bowles (Florida State) def. Austin Krajicek (Texas A&M), 7-6 (5), 6-3.
No. 3 Sam Chang (Florida State) def. Wil Spencer (Texas A&M), 6-4, 6-2.
No. 4 Chris Chirico (Texas A&M) def. Chris Cloer (Florida State), 6-3, 6-4.
No. 5 Maciek Sykut (Florida State) def. Matt Bain (Texas A&M), 6-3, 1-6, 6-3.
No. 6 Brad Mixson (Florida State) def. Kayvon Karimi (Texas A&M), 6-1, 6-0.
No. 1 (26) Aubone-Bowles (Florida State) def. Krajicek-Spencer (Texas A&M), 9-8 (3).
No. 2 Chirico-Pollock (Texas A&M) def. Sykut-Chang (Florida State), 8-5.
No. 3 Drew Bailey-Mixson (Florida State) def. Karimi-Bain (Texas A&M), 8-6.
ORDER OF FINISH
Doubles: 2, 3, 1
Singles: 6, 3, 4, 2*, 5, 1