Jan. 27, 2012
COLUMBIA, S.C. - South Carolina men's tennis continued its perfect play with a 7-0 victory over Elon at the USC Indoor Facility Friday morning. The Gamecocks have not lost a team point through three matches this season, dropping just one competition in their 27 individual matches.
"Gamecocks had another great day today," head coach Josh Goffi said. "Completely sweeping a team is a good sign early in the season. Our guys went out and took care of business, took care of themselves and executed the game plan, winning handily in doubles and singles. It's been a team goal, these first three matches, to execute the things we can control, and the guys are doing an amazing job of that. If we can continue to do that, pay attention to details, we feel confident in our ability to get good results this season."
The Gamecocks powered through the doubles point, winning all three matches by at least two service breaks. Chip Cox and Andrew Adams opened with an 8-1 win in the No. 3 spot, securing their third break of the match on a series of volleys from Cox, the last of which was angled off the court for a winner. In the No. 2 matchup, Ivan Machado and Carl Eguez broke Elon's first two service games. Their 4-0 lead came on a well-timed drop volley from Machado with both Elon players on the baseline. The pair added a third break en route to the 8-3 win. At the top of the lineup, Nick Jones and Kyle Koch also claimed an 8-3 victory behind four service breaks, including the last two Elon service games of the match.
The Gamecocks won the first set in all four of the first matches on court. Eguez was the most efficient in the first set, playing Elon's No. 4 Carlos Arboleda. After the Phoenix junior held serve to knot the set a 2-2 Eguez rolled through the next four games to win the set. In the No. 3 match, Cox rallied back from an early service break by Elon's Jordan Kaufmann. Trailing 1-3, Cox won five of the next six games to claim the set. He carried that momentum into the second, where he doubled the Gamecocks' advantage to 2-0 with a 6-1 win. Eguez survived an early service break in his second set to pick up the 6-3 win with a service winner on match point for a 3-0 South Carolina lead.
In the top two singles matches, Machado had an early break erased late, but he bounced right back to go up 5-4 as his solid return game repeatedly forced Elon's top player into errors. The Gamecock senior consolidated that break with a strong service game for a 6-4 first-set win. While Machado was battling in his second set, Adams' first set against Elon's Stefan Fortmann went to a tiebreaker. South Carolina's freshman stormed out to a 5-1 lead before seeing his opponent repeatedly draw him to the next and battle back to 6-6. Adams' ace ended the run, but Fortmann's passing shot again leveled the tiebreak. Adams stayed the course, patiently battling until Fortmann's miscues cost him the set 7-6 (7). Adams carried that momentum into the second set, which he won 6-2 to clinch the team victory for the Gamecocks.
Back on Court 1, both players were struggling to hold serve, and Silverman took a 4-1 advantage. Machado won three of the next four games to get back on serve at 4-5, though. After both players held their serves, it was back on Machado's racquet to force a tiebreak. Elon's sophomore managed one more break, forcing a third set. The final set was hard fought with both players growing alternately confident and frustrated throughout. A Silverman double fault gave Machado the early 3-2 edge. He was pressured in his next service game, but was solid at the net to consolidate the break. Machado took a 5-2 advantage with great returns in Silverman's next service game. After a diving backhand sent up a lob that Silverman netted, Machado was up 5-3. His opponent would not relinquish the match, however, winning the next game to pull within 5-4 with a chance to get back on serve. Machado kept the pressure up, though, forcing Silverman to overcome several break points, the last of which he double faulted to give Machado a 6-3 victory.
In the No. 5 match, Koch overpowered Elon's Andrew Prince, 6-2, 6-1, allowing the Phoenix sophomore to hold serve just once in the match. Ben Barnette completed the sweep for the Gamecocks. He claimed the first set from Christopher Geaslen 6-4 before cruising in the second 6-1.
The Gamecocks will put their perfect record on the line in a doubleheader on Sun., Jan. 29, beginning at 10 a.m. against No. 69 Georgia State. South Carolina will take on Davidson at 4 p.m.
South Carolina 7, Elon 0Doubles (Order of Finish: 3, 2, 1)
Nick Jones/Kyle Koch (SC) def. Cameron Silverman/Jordan Kaufman (E) 8-3
Ivan Machado/Carl Eguez (SC) def. Stefan Fortmann/Andrew Prince (E) 8-3
Chip Cox/Andrew Adams (SC) def. Dan Sablik/Christopher Geaslen (E) 8-1
Singles (Order of Finish: 3, 4, 2, 1, 5, 6)
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