KNOXVILLE, TN - Brandon Fickey defeated Gerardo Meza at number-three singles in clinching the match and giving #6 Tennessee a 4-3 victory over #23 Clemson in the second round of the NCAA Men’s Tennis Tournament at Knoxville, TN Saturday afternoon.
With the win, Tennessee improves to 25-8 overall and advance to the round of 16 at the NCAA finals site in Urbana, Ill., next week. Clemson finishes the season with a 19-8 record. The match lasted five hours and 12 minutes. The match was moved indoors towards the end of doubles because of thunderstorms.
“This is one of the best, if not the best tennis matches, that I have ever been involved with in my coaching career,” said the Tigers’ Head Coach Chuck McCuen. Everyone on both sides battled the entire match. It was a heart-breaking loss for us. But I cannot fault our effort.”
Clemson took an early 1-0 lead after winning the doubles point. A feature of the match is when the Tigers’ doubles team of Yannick Maden and Dominique Maden upset the number-one doubles team in the country in clinching the doubles point for Clemson. The Maden brothers, ranked 11th nationally, defeated the Volunteers’ Mikelis Libietis and Hunter Reese at number-one doubles, 9-8. The Madens have a 23-6 record overall and a 13-3 mark in dual matches.
Clemson took a 2-0 lead when Dominique Maden defeated Jarryd Chaplin of Tennessee 6-0, 6-3 at number-four singles. Maden is 10-10 on the year in singles.
Tennessee won the next three singles matches to take a 3-2 lead in the contest. At number-five singles, John Collins defeated Clemson’s Zachary Rigsby 6-1, 6-2. #34 Hunter Reese of Tennessee defeated Clemson’s #105 Hunter Harrington 6-3, 6-3 at number-two singles to tie the team score 2-2.
The nation’s number-one ranked player Mikelis Libietis of Tennessee outlasted Yannick Maden 7-5, 7-6 at number-one singles. Clemson’s freshman Austin Ansari won his 17th match of the season as he defeated Edward Jones 6-2, 3-6, 6-2 at number-six singles evening the score at 3-3. Fickey then defeated Meza at number-three singles 6-4, 6-7, 6-4 to clinch the match for the Volunteers.
“Today I was again proud of our doubles teams. We played so well today in doubles. I was very proud of the Maden's as they upset the number-one doubles team in the country. I thought that we competed hard today and I was very happy with the effort. It was an intense match. It was the kind of match that a true competitor would love to be involved in from start to finish. Tennessee had a great atmosphere and really played up this weekend’s matches.
“This was two great teams giving maximum effort today. I am very proud of our team, and we hate to see the season come to an end,” said McCuen. “This was a very special Clemson team.
“We look forward to the Maden brothers competing in the NCAA Individual Tournament. They really represent Clemson in a first-class manner,” said McCuen.
Yannick Maden will compete in the NCAA singles tournament and he along with his brother Dominique will compete in the doubles tournament to be held May 22-27 at the Khan Outdoor Tennis Complex/Atkins Tennis Center in Urbana, Illinois.
Clemson vs. Tennessee Match Results
May 11, 2013 at Knoxville, Tenn. (Goodfriend Tennis Center)
Tennessee 4, Clemson 3
1. #1 Mikelis Libietis (UT) def. #26 Yannick Maden (CU) 7-5, 7-6 (7-4)
2. #34 Hunter Reese (UT) def. #105 Hunter Harrington (CU) 6-3, 6-3
3. Brandon Fickey (UT) def. Gerardo Meza (CU) 6-4, 6-7 (3-7), 6-4
4. Dominique Maden (CU) def. Jarryd Chaplin (UT) 6-0, 6-3
5. John Collins (UT) def. Zachary Rigsby (CU) 6-1, 6-2
6. Austin Ansari (CU) def. Edward Jones (UT) 6-2, 3-6, 6-2
1. #11 Y. Maden/D. Maden (CU) def. #1 Libietis/Reese (UT) 9-8 (7-3)
2. Rigsby/Ayrton Wibowo (CU) def. Fickey/Chaplin (UT) 8-3
3. #34 Jones/Collins (UT) def. Harrington/Meza (CU) 8-6
Order of finish: Doubles (2,3,1); Singles (4,5,2,1,6,3)