Two Gamecocks Earn Career-High Ranked Wins in Loss to Georgia
Chicago, Ill. – South Carolina men’s tennis fell 3-4 for No. 13 Georgia in the Round of 16 at the ITA National Indoor Championships on Friday. The Gamecock won the doubles point and two singles players picked up top-10 ranked wins during the loss.
The match started in doubles where the nation’s No. 3 pair of Toby Samuel and Connor Thomson took on No. 24 Ethan Quinn and Trent Bryde of Georgia. The Gamecock pair got off to a hot start, going up 4-0 before their opponents got on the board. The Georgia pair wasn’t going down easy though, taking the next four straight games to even the match at four all. Samuel and Thomson managed to right their ship and win the next two games to take the match 6-4. The win is the duo’s first ranked doubles win of the dual season.
Following the decision on Court 1, both Courts 2 and 3 were headed to tiebreakers. At the No. 2 spot in the lineup, No. 30 Jake Beasley and James Story ran away with their tiebreak, winning it 7-2 to clinch the doubles point. Beasley and Story are undefeated in dual action together and Beasley is on a 15-match doubles win streak dating back to tournament play.
Play transitioned to singles were the Bulldogs were quick to even the match score with a win on Court 6.
At the top spot in the lineup, Samuel was the first Gamecock to get a singles win. The No. 11 ranked junior took on No. 5 freshman Ethan Quinn of Georgia. Samuel was unstoppable in the match, winning the first set 6-3, and the second 6-2 for the highest ranked win of his career. He had a previous career-high upset over then-No. 8 JJ Tracy of Ohio State at the ITA All-American Championships in 2022.
Thomson earned the next point for South Carolina, also with a top-10 upset. The No. 12 ranked Gamecock took on No. 8 Phillip Henning. The junior defeated his fifth-year counterpart 6-2, 6-3, earning the highest ranked win of his career. Thomson’s previous career-high also came on behalf of Henning when the Gamecock defeated the Bulldog in three sets at the Miami Spring Invite in January. Henning was ranked No. 10 during that matchup
This marks the third time that Thomson has earned his highest career win off of Henning. Prior to the January matchup, Thomson defeated then-No. 18 Henning during the regular season in March of 2021.
Gamecocks continued to fight on all remaining courts, but both Casey Hoole and Story fell in second-set tiebreakers for the Bulldogs to even the overall match at three all.
All eyes turned to Court 3 for the decision. No. 67 Raphael Lambling forced No. 87 Bryde to a third set after dropping the first, but the Gamecock couldn’t hold his momentum, giving up the final set to allow Georgia the match.
South Carolina will continue competition at the ITA Indoor Championships tomorrow in the consolation bracket. The Gamecocks will take on No. 10 Baylor beginning at 10 a.m. ET
The Gamecocks and the Bears have only met twice before in competition with South Carolina winning both matches – 8-1 in 1978 and 9-0 in 1981.
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(13) Georgia 4, (8) South Carolina 3
Doubles (order of finish: 1, 2)
- #3 Toby Samuel/Conner Thomson (SC) def. #24 Ethan Quinn/Trent Bryde (UGA) 6-4
- #30 Jake Beasley/James Story (SC) def. Teodor Giusca/Philip Henning (UGA) 7-6 (7-2)
- #59 Casey Hoole/Raphael Lambling (SC) vs. Blake Croyder/Britton Johnston (UGA) 6-6 (5-4), unfinished
Singles (order of finish: 6, 1, 2, 5, 4, 3)
- #11 Toby Samuel (SC) def. #5 Ethan Quinn (UGA) 6-3, 6-2
- #12 Connor Thomson (SC) def. #8 Philip Henning (UGA) 6-2, 6-3
- #87 Trent Bryde (UGA) def. #67 Raphael Lambling (SC) 7-5, 4-6, 6-3
- Blake Croyder (UGA) def. James Story (SC) 6-3, 7-6 (7-5)
- Teodor Giusca (UGA) def. Casey Hoole (SC) 6-3, 7-6 (7-4)
- Miguel Perez Pena (UGA) def. Jake Beasley (SC) 6-2, 6-1