March 26, 2004
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – Carolina notched their first conference win Friday night with a 4-3 upset over #21 Tennessee in Knoxville. The victory marked the Gamecocks first win over a top 25 opponent this season.
“It was a great win for us today. We were in a similar position against then #15 Kentucky and fell just short,” said head coach Kent DeMars. “We were also in the same position against Alabama earlier this year. I’m glad the chips finally fell our way tonight. Our guys gave a great effort, and I’m proud of them. Matches like this are tough mentally, and I knew with our experience and close matches we would pull one out.”
USC fell behind early in the doubles point as Geraldo Knorr and Pedro Rodrigues fell 8-3 to Simon Rea and Damien Spizzo at No. 1 doubles. Meanwhile, Tom Eklund and Marcus Westman dropped an 8-5 decision to Mark Dietrich and Wade Orr.
After dropping the doubles point, the Gamecocks were about to come out on top in three matches that were decided by decisive third sets. At No. 6 singles, Pedro Rodrigues upset #88 ranked Wade Orr 6-1, 5-7, 6-2. At No. 5 singles, Ben Atkinson fell to Mark Dietrich 6-2, 6-3. At No. 3 singles, Carl Wermee rallied to defeat Ockie Oosthuizen 3-6, 7-5, 6-2. At No. 2 singles, Tom Ecklund defeated Damien Spizzo 6-3, 6-4. At No. 1 singles, Marcus Westman fell to #45 Simon Rea 6-1, 6-4. At No. 4 singles, Geraldo Knorr clinched the match for South Carolina by edging Kiril Tcherveniachki 6-7, 6-0, 6-3.
The Gamecocks now travel to Athens, Ga. to take on the No. 12 Bulldogs at 1 p.m. Sunday.
Order of Finish: 1, 2
1. #41 Simon Rea/Damien Spizzo (UT) d. Geraldo Knorr/Pedro Rodrigues (USC), 8-3
2. Mark Dietrich/Wade Orr (UT) d. Tom Eklund/Marcus Westman (USC), 8-5
Order of Finish: 5, 2, 1, 6, 3, 4
1. #45 Simon Rea (UT) d. Marcus Westman (USC), 6-1, 6-4
2. Damien Spizzo (UT) d. Tom Ecklund (USC), 6-3, 6-4
3. Carl Wermee (USC) d. Ockie Oosthuizen (UT), 3-6, 7-5, 6-2
4. Geraldo Knorr (USC) d. Kiril Tcherveniachki (UT), 6-7, 6-0, 6-3
5. Mark Dietrich (UT) d. Ben Atkinson, (USC), 6-2, 6-3
6. Pedro Rodrigues (USC) d. #88 Wade Orr (UT), 6-1, 5-7, 6-2