April 10, 2003
Complete Weekend Match Notes in PDF Format
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No. 13 South Carolina closes out its home schedule with matches against two top-ten SEC foes over senior weekend at the Sam Daniel Tennis Center. The Gamecocks enter the weekend riding an 11-match home winning streak, the best since 1984. USC hosts No. 2 Florida, the unbeaten leaders of the SEC, on Friday at 2 p.m. Carolina then hosts eighth-ranked Vanderbilt in a 1 p.m. match Sunday. USC has won its last four matches, including a 5-2 triumph over Region II foe Wake Forest on Wednesday, giving the Gamecocks a perfect 8-0 record against the region and a 19-match winning streak against Region II opposition.
SOUTH CAROLINA SENIORS: This weekend’s home matches versus Florida and Vanderbilt will be the final regular season contests at the Sam Daniel Tennis Center for three USC senior players: Angelo Niculescu, Seth Rose and Nasir Sherazi.
HOME SWEET HOME: South Carolina has won all 11 of its home matches in 2003, including victories over seven ranked opponents (No. 64 Furman, No. 23 LSU, No. 20 Arkansas, No. 30 Clemson, No. 18 Georgia, No. 42 Tennessee and No. 21 Wake Forest). It marks the longest home win streak by USC since 11-straight home match victories during the 1984 season. Last year, the Gamecocks were 11-3 in home matches, dropping the three matches to Top-25 opponents, two of which were 4-3 results.
RALLYING AGAINST THE RANKED: The Gamecocks have recorded an impressive 10-3 record against ranked opponents during the 2003 dual match season. No. 64 Furman, No. 36 Mississippi State, No. 23 LSU, No. 20 Arkansas, No. 39 North Carolina, No. 30 Clemson, No. 23 Georgia Tech, No. 18 Georgia, No. 42 Tennessee and No. 21 Wake Forest all have fallen to the Gamecocks this season. The victory total against ranked teams includes three road wins (Mississippi State, North Carolina and Georgia Tech) USC has won eight of its last ten matches against ranked opponents.
A PAIR OF PLAYERS RANKED AMONG TOP 56: Two Gamecocks are listed among the ITA singles rankings: Seth Rose (No. 47) and Angelo Niculescu (No. 56). Rose plays at No. 1 singles and has 13 dual match victories, 11 at No. 1, this season while Niculescu began 2003 with a 12-match winning streak and is second on the team with 14 dual match triumphs.
AGAINST FLORIDA: Florida leads the all-time series 10-4, including a 5-2 win last year in Gainesville. The Gamecocks won the schools’ last meeting in Columbia, a 4-3 triumph in 2001 over the ninth-ranked Gators.
AGAINST VANDERBILT: USC leads the all-time series 14-3, including a 4-2 win last season in Nashville. The Gamecocks have won the last five meetings in Columbia.
COACH VS. PUPIL: One of USC head coach Kent DeMars’ top players while coaching at Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville was current Vanderbilt head coach Ken Flach, a 1983 graduate. Under DeMars guidance, Flach was an All-American in 1979 before going on to pair with Roberto Seguso as a professional doubles team. The tandem became 1984 Olympic Gold Medalists, 1985 U.S. Open Champions and 1987 and 1988 Wimbledon Champions.