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Aug. 4, 2011

A pair of South Carolina men’s tennis players advanced to the semifinals of the USTA National Clay Court Championships Boys’ 18 hosted by the City of Delray Beach, Fla. Sophomore Chip Cox paired with future teammate Andrew Adams to finish third in the national event, topping three seeded teams along the way.

Cox and Adams opened the event with a 7-5, 6-3 win over Aaron Chaffee and Jeffrey Offerdahl in the first round of the 64-team field. The Gamecock tandem needed a third-set super tiebreaker to clinch a spot in the round of 16 as Alexander and Ian Van Cott fought past a 6-0 Gamecock first-set win to claim the second 6-4. Cox and Adams prevailed 10-7 in the tiebreaker.

Facing the No. 4 seeded duo of Brett Clark and Trey Strobel, South Carolina’s pair eked out a 7-5 first set and went on to win the second 6-4 to advance to the quarterfinals. The fifth-seeded team of Nicholas Hu and Anthony Tsodikov awaited, but were handily dispatched 6-4, 6-4.

Cox and Adams drew No. 2 seed Zack McCourt and Gordon Watson in the semifinals but were undaunted, taking the first set 6-1. McCourt and Watson fought back to win the next two sets 6-4, 6-4 to win a spot in the final. Cox and Adams went into the third-place match against No. 9 seed Stuart Kenyon and Ashok Narayana. This time it was the Gamecocks that fell behind 1-6 in the first set. A pair of service breaks yielded a 6-3 victory in the second set. In the third, Cox and Adams prevailed with a late-set service break to win 7-5 and claim third place.

McCourt and Watson went on to win the championship with a three-set victory in the final.