Coral Spring, FL - The No. 31-ranked Florida State men’s tennis team closed out the regular season with a 6-1 win over No. 47 Miami. After Saturday’s match at the Neil Schiff Tennis Center, the team finished with a 17-10 record and a 5-6 conference mark this year.
“It was a typical rivalry match,” said head coach Dwayne Hultquist. “It was very hard fought and Miami did a good job of coming into singles strong, at one point they were winning four of the six singles matches. It was a grind to get down here with our flight being canceled and not being able to practice Friday night, but our guys did a good job of managing it.”
The start of the match was delayed because of rain, but it did not slow down the Seminoles in doubles as senior Blake Davis and junior Cristian Gonzalez Mendez got a quick 8-3 win against William Albanese and Henrique Tsukamoto on court three. Sophomore Michael Rinaldi and freshman Grayson Goldin clinched the doubles point with an 8-4 win on court two over Gabriel Flores and Diego Soto.
“The doubles point is always important to win and we have great success when we win it,” continued Hultquist. “Grayson and Michael played probably one of their best matches of the year today.”
In singles play, the two teams split the first sets to put Miami back in the match. Goldin quickly topped Danny Shebshayevich on court six to win 6-1, 6-4 and give the Seminoles a 2-0 lead. Down 5-4 in the first set, sophomore Marco Nunez won three straight games to win the first set and went on to win 7-5, 6-1 over Soto. Moments later, Gonzalez Mendez dropped 6-0, 7-6 (1) to get Miami on the scoreboard.
“I thought the key to the match was Marco,” continued Hultquist. “Down 5-4, he broke serve and went on to win the set. He was down 3-0 to start the match but he came back and dominated the second set. It was important for us to have multiple options.”
Despite losing their first sets, junior Dominic Cotrone and Davis both won their second sets to force a third. Davis defeated Wilfredo Gonzalez 2-6, 7-6 (2), 6-2 to clinch the match for the Seminoles and give the Seminoles their fourth straight win against the Hurricanes.
No. 99 Cotrone upset No. 66 Omar Aly 3-6, 6-2, 6-3 on court one while Rinaldi won 6-2, 4-6, 6-4 on court five to close out the match.
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#31 Florida State def. #47 Miami 6-1
1. #90 Dominic Cotrone (FSU) def. No. 66 Omar Aly (UM) 3-6, 6-2, 6-3
2. Gabriel Flores (UM) def. #121 Cristian Gonzalez Mendez (FSU) 6-0, 7-6 (1)
3. Marco Nunez (FSU) def. Diego Soto (UM) 7-5, 6-1
4. Blake Davis (FSU) def. Wilfredo Gonzalez (UM) 2-6, 7-6 (2), 6-2
5. Michael Rinaldi (FSU) def. Henrique Tsukamoto (UM) 6-2, 4-6, 6-4
6. Grayson Goldin (FSU) def. Danny Shebshayevich (UM) 6-1, 6-4
1. Aly/Gonzalez (UM) def. Nunez/Cotrone (FSU) 8-4
2. Rinaldi/Goldin (FSU) def. Flores/Soto (UM) 8-4
3. Davis/Gonzalez Mendez (FSU) def. William Albanese/Tsukamoto (UM) 8-3
Order of finish: Doubles (3,2,1); Singles (6,3,2,4,1,5)