COLUMBIA, S.C. -
No. 27 South Carolina 4, No. 45 Alabama 3
COLUMBIA, S.C. -- After play was halted overnight due to severe weather, No. 27 South Carolina men's tennis (17-7, 7-5 SEC) prevailed 4-3 over Alabama (16-11, 2-10 SEC) on Monday morning at Carolina Tennis Center. Play was suspended on Sunday afternoon with both teams deadlocked 3-3, and Harrison O'Keefe leading the No. 5 singles match 4-2. O'Keefe won back-to-back games following Monday's restart in just 11 minutes to give Carolina the 4-3 win.
Following their annual Senior Day ceremonies, the Gamecocks picked up a fourth-straight doubles point to begin the match on Sunday, clinching the point with a win from their No. 2 pair of seniors Thomas Mayronne and Gabriel Friedrich.
Paul Jubb put a dominant 6-0, 6-2 showing to win his ninth SEC singles match of the season, while Yancy Dennis closed out a 6-3, 6-4 win at the No. 4 spot to get South Carolina within a point of deciding the match. O'Keefe earned back-to-back breaks to go ahead 4-1 in the third set of his match before play was halted, and he made quick work to close out a 6-2 third set win Monday morning.
The Gamecocks then clinched the doubles point as seniors Thomas Mayronne and Gabriel Friedrich broke serve to go ahead, 3-1 and eventually finished off Thibault Cancel and Alexey Nesterov of Alabama 6-3.
DOUBLES (1, 3, 2*)
1. (51) Edson Ortiz/Mazen Osama (BAMA) def. (49) Yancy Dennis/Harrison O'Keefe (SC) 6-2
2. (74) Gabriel Friedrich/Thomas Mayronne (SC) def. Thibault Cancel/Alexey Nesterov (BAMA) 6-3*
3. Paul Jubb/Wood Benton (SC) def. Patrick Kaukovalta/Zhe Zhou (BAMA) 6-3
Jubb continued his dominant play against SEC competition with a 6-0, 6-2 win to pick up his fifth singles victory in his last six matches to give South Carolina a 2-0 lead.
Yancy Dennis later secured his 6-3, 6-4 win at No. 4 to give the Gamecocks a 3-1 lead before Alabama evened the match with wins at Nos. 1 and 3.
In the No. 5 singles match, Harrison O'Keefe rebounded from a 7-6 (4) loss in the first set to even his match with a 6-3 win in set two. O'Keefe then earned back-to-back breaks to go ahead 2-1 and 4-1 before a double-fault brought the third set to 4-2 where play was suspended. Following an extended weather delay, the decision was made to push play until Monday morning with both teams deadlocked at 3-3. "If there's anybody on our team we want in that position, it's going to be Harrison," said Head Coach Josh Goffi.
O'Keefe came out for Monday's restart and broke serve to go up 5-2 before dropping just a single point in the final game of the match to win 6-2. "The recall button that guy has and the experience that he has those moments is huge. He knows exactly what to do; he's coachable in those moments; and he can be about as relaxed as you can be," explained Goffi.
1. (26) Mazen Osama (BAMA) def. (32) Gabriel Friedrich (SC) 7-5, 6-4
2. (61) Paul Jubb (SC) def. Patrick Kaukovalta (BAMA) 6-0, 6-2
3. Edson Ortiz (BAMA) def. Thomas Mayronne (SC) 0-6, 6-4, 6-2
4. Yancy Dennis (SC) def. Alexey Nesterov (BAMA) 6-3, 6-4
5. Harrison O'Keefe (SC) def. Riccardo Roberto (BAMA), 6-7 (4-7), 6-3, 6-2*
6. Zhe Zhou (BAMA) def. Wood Benton (SC) 6-2, 6-4
On Harrison O'Keefe finishing off his singles victory after the restart
On how he assesses the team following this year's SEC regular-season schedule
On what to look forward to Friday against Clemson
- Head Coach Josh Goffi
UP NEXT FOR THE GAMECOCKS
South Carolina will conclude its 2018 regular season next week as the Gamecocks travel to face Clemson on Friday night beginning at 5 p.m.
For updates, continue to check back with GamecocksOnline.com or follow the team on social media (@GamecockMTennis).
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