April 21, 2013
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - The No. 30 Florida State men's tennis team started the day strong sweeping doubles and honoring their seniors before singles, but the Seminoles were unable to hold on to the match as No. 52 Virginia Tech (14-8) topped FSU (17-9) 4-3 on Sunday at the Scott Speicher Tennis Center.
"It was a pretty hard loss with the team losing on Senior Day," said head coach Dwayne Hultquist. "We did great in doubles, it was a good start to the day, but we just lost the momentum at the end of the first sets of singles."
Beginning in doubles, the Seminoles raced ahead on courts one and two to give the team an early lead. The No. 42 tandem of junior Blake Davis and sophomore Dominic Cotrone posted their second consecutive upset by defeating No. 22 Andreas Bjerrehus and Amerigo Contini 8-1 on court one.
On court two, the No. 58 duo of senior Andres Bucaro and sophomore Benjamin Lock won 8-4 over Hunter Koontz and Trpimir Kujundzic to clinch the point. On court three, seniors Anderson Reed and Jordan Kelly-Houston were down 3-5, but fought hard and came back to win 8-6 for the sweep.
After a break to recognize seniors Bucaro, Reed and Kelly-Houston, the teams returned to the courts for singles play. Virginia Tech fought back from losing doubles and managed to win four first sets to set up an upset.
"That was the key to the match," continued Hultquist. "We only won two of the first sets. Virginia Tech got the momentum. Michael (Rinaldi) did good fighting back to force a third set but Virginia Tech ended up playing stronger in the end."
Lock upset No. 98 Bjerrehus 6-0, 6-3 on court two to give Florida State a 2-0 advantage but No. 52 Contini defeated No. 95 Cotrone 6-2, 6-1 on court one to make the score 2-1. Sophomore Cristian Gonzalez Mendez gave Florida State the 3-1 lead with a 6-2, 6-1 win on court six over Aaron Gomez.
After that, the Hokies tied it up 3-3 with Koontz defeating Reed 6-1, 6-1 and Joao Monteiro topping Davis 6-3, 6-4. With the match tied, it came down to freshman Michael Rinaldi on court five.
Rinaldi lost the first set to Lucas Oliveira and as the only court left in play, he took control and won the second set to force a third set. They both held serve for the first two games until they went on to break one another for three straight games. With the match 5-3 in advantage of the Hokies, Rinaldi fought hard to hold his serve to make it 5-4. Rinaldi tried to break Oliveira but was unable as the Hokie won 6-2, 5-7, 6-4 to clinch the upset.
The Seminoles travel to Cary, N.C. for the ACC Championships next weekend. For more information, check back to Seminoles.com. You can also follow the team at Twitter.com/FSU_MTennis.