Men’s Tennis Falls to No. 18 Auburn
Columbia, S.C. – No. 4 South Carolina men’s tennis fell 3-4 to No. 18 Auburn on Friday night. The Gamecocks took the doubles point but were only able to earn two singles wins.
In doubles, the Gamecocks tested out a new lineup to accommodate injuries. The Tigers were the first to get a win with No. 23 Raul Dobai and Finn Murgett defeating No. 43 Jake Beasley and James Story 7-5. The Gamecocks were quick to even the decision with Raphael Lambling and Casey Hoole getting their own 7-5 win from the No. 3 position.
The decision fell to the No. 2 pair of Connor Thomson and freshman Lucas da Silva. The Gamecock pair had fallen early after being broken on their second service fame and were down 1-3. From their the duo went back and fourth with their opponents Jan Galka and Billy Blaydes with each pair taking their own service games. When Thomson and da Silva were down 4-5, they achieved a much-needed break to tie the set up a five all. Both teams took their own service games from there and the match was turned to a tiebreak.
In the breaker, Auburn’s pair started hot, jumping our to a 3-0 lead, but the Gamecocks didn’t give in, climbing back to tie the decision at four all. South Carolina claimed the next point to go up 5-4, but Auburn earned the next, tying it again at five all. From there is was South Carolina’s serve and Thomson closed out the match with a powerful serve to take it 7-6(5), clinching the doubles point.
Play moved to singles where No. 82 Hoole was the first to record a win, playing at his newly promoted spot at No. 4 in the lineup. The sophomore took down Galka, a senior, in straight sets, 6-2, 6-4 to put the Gamecocks up 2-0.
Auburn was quick to respond with a point of their own, taking the match on Court 5 in straight sets.
No. 8 Thomson was the next to record a win with his coming on Court 2 over Murgett. The junior dominated his first set, taking it 6-2, but had to have the second set decided in a tiebreaker. Thomson went up in the tiebreaker 2-0 to start but his opponent responded with two points of his own to even things up. From there the Gamecock took the next three points and was able to hold that lead for the remainder of the match, winning the second set 7-6, (4).
The South Carolina lead 3-1 when the Tigers made a comeback, taking wins on Courts 3, 1, and 6 to clinch the match.
The men’s tennis team will be back in action at the Carolina Tennis Center on Sunday, March 24, where they will host No. 55 Arkansas at noon.
For all the latest South Carolina men’s tennis information, continue to follow GamecocksOnline.com or the team on social media (@GamecockMTennis).
(18) Auburn 4, (4) South Carolina 3
Doubles (order of finish: 1, 3, 2)
- #23 Raul Dobai/Finn Murgett (AUB) def. #43 Jake Beasley/James Story (SC) 7-5
- Connor Thomson/Lucas da Silva (SC) def. Jan Galka/Billy Blaydes (AUB) 7-6 (7-5)
- Raphael Lambling/Casey Hoole (SC) def. Tyler Stice/Alejandro Moreno (AUB) 7-5
Singles (order of finish: 4, 5, 2, 3, 1, 6)
- #110 Tyler Stice (AUB) def. #3 Toby Samuel (SC) 1-6, 6-3, 6-4
- #8 Connor Thomson (SC) def. Finn Murgett (AUB) 6-2, 7-6 (7-4)
- #107 Alejandro Moreno (AUB) def. #111 Raphael Lambling (SC) 6-2, 6-3
- #82 Casey Hoole (SC) def. Jan Galka (AUB) 6-2, 6-4
- Raul Dobai (AUB) def. Jake Beasley (SC) 7-5, 6-4
- Billy Blaydes (AUB) def. Lucas da Silva (SC) 6-2, 4-6, 6-1