Gamecocks Fall 5-2 at LSU in SEC Opener
March 5, 2010
COLUMBIA, S.C. - No. 41 South Carolina suffered a 5-2 defeat at the hands of No. 73 LSU at W.T. "Dub" Robinson Stadium Friday afternoon. The Gamecocks (6-3, 0-1 SEC) won the doubles point, but put together just one singles win against the Tigers (3-5, 1-0 SEC). Senior Pedro Campos accounted for part of both South Carolina's points with wins in the No. 1 doubles and No. 2 singles matches.
The Gamecocks got off to a good start as their reformulated doubles lineup sweeping all three matches for a 1-0 South Carolina lead. Seniors Diego Cubas and Campos teamed up in the No. 1 position and quickly stormed past Roger Anderson and Neal Skupski 8-2. Senior Ivan Cressoni and freshman Alexander Kostanov needed just a few more games before dismissing LSU's Julien Gauthier and Mark Bowtell 8-5 in the No. 3 spot. Junior Johannes Pulsfort and Ivan Machado staged a late break of serve to complete the sweep with an 8-6 decision in the No. 2 match.
LSU rallied back quickly with wins in the first three singles matches to finish. Gauthier handed Kostanov a 6-1, 6-3 loss in the No. 3 spot just ahead of Stefan Szacinski's 6-1, 6-4 win over Machado in the No. 4 match. Bowtell squeaked by Pulsfort 6-1, 7-6 in the No. 5 position to give the Tigers a 3-1 lead.
Meanwhile, all three of the remaining matches - Nos. 1, 2 and 6 - went into a third set. In the No. 6 contest, Cressoni rallied back from a 6-3 loss in the first set to claim the second 6-4. LSU's Olivier Borsos took an early break in the third to lead 4-2, while in the Nos. 1 and 2 matches it was the Tigers that pushed back with second-set wins after the Gamecocks in those positions, Cubas and Campos, respectively, had won the first. Borsos went on to win the No. 6 match with a 6-3 victory in the third set, delivering the decisive fourth point for the Tigers.
Campos closed out his seventh singles victory of the season with a 6-1 third set over Sebastian Carlsson. Skupski, the nation's No. 44 player, finished his comeback over the 65th-ranked Cubas with a 6-4 win in his third set.
South Carolina stays on the road this weekend for a 1 p.m. contest against No. 52 Arkansas on Sunday.
ResultsDoubles (Order of Finish: 1, 3, 2)
1. Diego Cubas/Pedro Campos (SC) def. Roger Anderson/Neal Skupski (LSU) 8-2
2. Ivan Machado/Johannes Pulsfort (SC) def. Sebastian Carlsson/Stefan Szacinski (LSU) 8-6
3. Ivan Cressoni/Alexander Kostanov (SC) def. Julien Gauthier/Mark Bowtell (LSU) 8-5
Singles (Order of Finish: 3, 4, 5, 6, 2, 1)>