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Feb. 8, 2010

COLUMBIA, S.C. – No. 45 South Carolina men’s tennis continues its four-match home stand with a 2 p.m. contest against No. 46 NC State on Tue., Feb. 9, at the USC Field House. The Gamecocks are 3-2 this season after knocking off Charlotte 5-2 on Saturday. South Carolina’s top singles player, Diego Cubas, is ranked 48th in the nation, while the Gamecocks’ top doubles tandem of Cubas and Ivan Machado are 27th in the country.

South Carolina has been up and down this season, taking care of its home court but struggling in road matches. The Gamecocks have relied heavily on winning the first point of the match, posting a 3-0 record when winning the doubles point to start things off. In five dual matches this season, South Carolina head coach Kent DeMars has used four different singles lineups as he looks to blend the Gamecocks’ established talent with the team’s new faces. Freshman Alexander Kostanov has been the newcomer most routinely in the lineup, and he boasts a 3-1 record so far, playing largely in the No. 5 singles position.

The Wolfpack arrives in Columbia toting a 5-1 record, including a 4-3 victory over then-No. 33 Michigan on Jan. 24. NC State’s lone loss was a 6-1 decision at the hands of then No. 55 Vanderbilt. The Wolfpack is a young team as the 11-player roster includes just one senior and two juniors. Freshman Dave Thomson leads the team with a 12-1 record so far in 2009-10, including a perfect 6-0 mark in dual matches, playing in the No. 3 or 4 position this spring.

The Gamecocks lead the all-time series with the Wolfpack 25-6 and have won five of the last six meetings. The most recent battle was a 5-2 South Carolina victory on Feb. 20, 2009, in Columbia. NC State’s most recent win in the series was a 5-2 decision on Feb. 25, 2006, in Columbia.