Feb. 13, 2005
Columbia, S.C. – The Gamecock men’s tennis team blanked the Samford Bulldogs (2-3, 0-0 Ohio Valley) on Sunday, 7-0, for their third straight win and seventh overall this season. Carolina (7-1, 0-0 SEC) swept Sunday’s doubleheader over Samford and Wofford to remain perfect at home this season. The win was USC’s third sweep of a doubleheader this year.
In the doubles competition, Carolina junior Geraldo Knorr and freshman Jaime Cuellar remained unbeaten on the season, defeating Stuart Misner and Hank Grant at No. 1 doubles. Knorr and Cuellar quickly got out to a 4-0 lead in the pro set and lost just two games the rest of the way, earning the 8-2 win in just 35 minutes. The No. 2 and No. 3 doubles matches were close until the latter stages, until the USC teams pulled away to earn the Gamecocks their seventh doubles point of the season. At No. 2 doubles, Pedro Rodrigues and Dmitry Babenko earned their third straight victory in doubles competition, defeating Manuel Miletic and Renan Silveira 8-4; while senior Ben Atkinson and freshman Thomas Stoddard downed Johnny Griffee and Brad Weaver 8-5 on court three.
USC carried over their momentum from the doubles matches into singles play, winning the first three singles matches in straight sets. Gamecock junior Geraldo Knorr won his third consecutive singles match and earned his seventh victory in his last eight overall matches. Knorr, playing at No. 1 singles for the first time this season on Sunday, breezed by Bulldog junior Miletic in just 58 minutes, winning 6-0, 6-1. The first set shutout was the third such set Knorr won this weekend. Knorr was on the court Sunday for just two hours and seven minutes, despite playing in two singles and two doubles matches.
Playing at No. 2 singles for the first time this season, Cuellar easily downed Stuart Misner, 6-1, 6-3. On court three, Rodrigues defeated fellow sophomore Brad Weaver 6-4, 6-1. Both matches were completed in just over an hour. The fourth singles match featured Carolina senior Ben Atkinson and Wofford’s Silveira. Atkinson won the first set 6-4, and then fought off a late rally by Silveira, who came from 4-1 down to take a 6-5 lead. Atkinson prevailed however, tying the set at six games apiece, before winning the tiebreaker game 10-2. The No. 5 singles match, played on court one, lasted just 51 minutes. USC sophomore Babenko, seeing his first singles action this weekend, lost just one game in the match, easily dispatching of the Bulldog freshman Grant, 6-0, 6-1. Completing the sweep for Carolina was junior Adam Adler, who defeated Wofford’s Griffee, 6-2, 6-1.
41st-ranked Carolina will return to action next Sunday, Feb. 20, when they play host to Troy and Georgia Southern in the final doubleheader of the year. The match is scheduled to begin at 10:30 a.m. at the Sam Daniels Tennis Facility. The outdoor center is located at the corner of Sumter and Heyward adjacent to Sarge Frye Field. Matches are open to the public and admission is free.