FAYETTEVILLE – It was a tough day on the courts for the No. 46 University of Arkansas men’s tennis team as it hosted No. 3 Georgia (16-3, 5-1) at the Dills Indoor Stadium Sunday. The Hogs came close in several matches but were unable to pull out a victory, losing, 7-0.After retooling their doubles lineup, the Razorbacks (9-9, 1-5), were strong on the doubles court against the Bulldogs, winning at No. 3 doubles behind new partners Matt Hogan and Dmitry Lebedev who posted the first win of the day, beating Javier Garrapiz and Drake Bernstein, 8-4.
Playing together for only the second time this season, Blake Strode and Chris Nott battled the No. 7-ranked team of Jamie Hunt and Nate Schnugg at No. 1 doubles but fell short, falling, 9-7.
“It’s been awhile since we’ve been competitive in doubles,” head Razorback coach Robert Cox said. “While it was good to get back and be close today, doubles was a heartbreaker for us. We played some really good tennis in doubles and then let Georgia take the point.”
On Court 3, Hogs Taylor King and Matt Walters lost, 8-4, to Borja Malo and Christian Vitulli.
Once on the singles court, Arkansas looked good, with leads on four courts early, but the Hogs could not hold on to their leads, dropping all six matches.
“Georgia is a very solid team,” Cox said. “They capitalized on every opportunity they had on the court and that’s why they won and why their ranked in the top five.”
Strode, currently ranked No. 17 in the nation, took on the No. 10 Schnugg on Court 1 and the two split the first two sets and headed into a match-deciding tiebreak. Strode got behind early and, although he made a push at the end, was unable to come up with the win, falling, 6-7(5), 6-3, (10-5).
Lebedev forced his opponent, Josh Varela, into a tiebreaker to decide the match after coming back from one set down. Lebedev and Varela were tied at eight in the deciding tiebreak when the Bulldog charged ahead to take the breaker and the win, 6-2, 6-7(6), (10-8).
Razorbacks Nott, Hogan, Nikolas Zogaj and Bradwin Williams all suffered straight sets losses to their Georgia counterparts.
Next weekend the Hogs will take to the road, traveling to South Carolina for the 2 p.m. match on Friday and then making their way to Gainesville, Fla. to face Florida on Sunday at noon.
For updated results and for complete coverage of Arkansas men’s tennis, log on to ArkansasRazorbacks.com.
#3 Georgia 7, #46 Arkansas 0March 29, 2009Fayetteville, Ark.Singles1. #10 Nate Schnugg (UGA) def. #17 Blake Strode (UA), 6-7(5), 6-3, 10-52. #73 Javier Garrapiz (UGA) def. Chris Nott (UA), 6-4, 6-23. #71 Jamie Hunt (UGA) def. Matt Hogan (UA), 6-4, 6-34. Josh Varela (UGA) def. Dmitry Lebedev (UA), 6-2, 6-7(6), 10-85. Drake Bernstein (UGA) def. Nikolas Zogaj (UA), 6-4, 6-26. Christian Vitulli (UGA) def. Bradwin Williams (UA), 6-4, 6-4
Doubles1. #7 Jamie Hunt/Nate Schnugg (UGA) def. Blake Strode/Chris Nott (UA), 9-72. Matt Hogan/Dmitry Lebedev (UA) def. Javier Garrapiz/Drake Bernstein (UGA), 8-43. Borja Malo/Christian Vitulli (UGA) def. Taylor King/Matt Walters (UA), 8-4
Order of Finish:Doubles: 2, 3, 1*Singles: 5, 6, 3*, 2, 1, 4