TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The No. 32 Florida State men’s tennis team (2-0) started the 2013 season Saturday with a pair of wins at the Indoor Tennis Facility in Tallahassee. The Seminoles were nearly perfect on the day going 12-0 in singles and 4-1 in doubles to beat UCF 7-0 then top Furman 7-0.
“It’s great being 12-0 in singles play,” said head coach Dwayne Hultquist. “When you get used to winning you build that confidence to go for your shots. I think both teams had some pretty good players so it was great to come away with two convincing wins. One of the advantages of doubleheader matches is you can work on your mental conditioning to be able to sustain a high level of play for a longer period of time.”
To begin the day, the team started with singles against UCF. The Seminoles took the courts eager to win and it showed as they went on to win all six first sets. Getting off the courts first was senior Anderson Reed who easily took down Jose Sangroniz 6-2, 6-2. Following him was freshman Michael Rinaldi who won 6-1, 6-3 over Mario Samson.
“I think everybody played really well for the first match,” said Rinaldi. “Almost everybody got off the court fast. Getting a couple matches under your belt gets us ready for the rest of the season.”
Senior Andres Bucaro quickly followed off with a 6-1, 6-4 win over Francesc Aulina while No. 99 sophomore Benjamin Lock defeated Pedro Wagner 6-3, 7-5. No. 107 Dominic Cotrone took down Amar Hromic 7-5, 7-5 while senior Jordan Kelly-Houston closed it down with a 7-6 (5), 2-6, (10-4) win over Jorge Blasco.
In doubles play Cotrone and Lock defeated Juan Bolina and Hromic 8-4 on court one while Redshirt freshman João Gauer and Rinaldi clinched the doubles point with an 8-6 win over Matthew Gladstone and Samson.
After a break, Florida State stormed back to the courts in a match against Furman, a series which dates back to 1962. Cotrone defeated Andrew Mellow on court one 6-1, 6-1 while Lock defeated Alex Christ 6-3, 2-2 (ret.). Reed topped Matt Browne 6-1, 6-3 on court four while Rinaldi beat Robbie Aru 6-1, 6-1 on court six.
“We all played well,” said Cotrone. “We played together as a team backing each other up. We all were just ready to play and were very prepared. It’s always great to get confidence. I know how good I’ve been playing so I wanted to make sure I executed and played the game style I wanted.”
Kelly-Houston played a long match but came out on top 7-5, 6-4 on court three against Joel Cook. In a match which lasted two hours and 30 minutes, Bucaro grinded out a 7-6 (2), 6-3 win over Jacob Behal.
Only two doubles matches were played since two singles matches went long. Rinaldi and Cotrone teamed up to top Richard Casagrande and Mellow 8-3 while Gauer and junior Blake Davis topped Browne and Tyler Droll won 8-2.
“There were some things we need to work on, like doubles. But I was really pleased with Dominic getting a solid win and playing well in the second match. It was great to see Michael, a freshman, get two wins today.
The Seminoles return to the courts next Saturday as they take on UAB and Florida Gulf Coast. For more information, check back to Seminoles.com. You can also follow the team at Twitter.com/FSU_MTennis.
No. 32 Florida State def. UCF 7-0
1. Jordan Kelly-Houston (FS) def. Jorge Blasco (UCF) 7-6 (7-5), 2-6, 1-0 (10-4)
2. #107 Dominic Cotrone (FS) def. Amar Hromic (UCF) 7-5, 7-5
3. #99 Benjamin Lock (FS) def. Pedro Wagner (UCF) 6-3, 7-5
4. Anderson Reed (FS) def. Jose Sangroniz (UCF) 6-2, 6-2
5. Andres Bucaro (FS) def. Francesc Aulina (UCF) 6-1, 6-4
6. Michael Rinaldi (FS) def. Mario Samson (UCF) 6-1, 6-3
Order of finish: Singles (4,6,5,3,2,1)
1. Dominic Cotrone/Benjamin Lock (FS) def. Juan Bolina/Amar Hromic (UCF) 8-4
2. Francesc Aulina/Pedro Wagner (UCF) def. Blake Davis/Anderson Reed (FS) 8-7 (12-10)
3. João Gauer/Michael Rinaldi (FS) def. Matthew Gladstone/Mario Samson (UCF) 8-6
Order of finish: Doubles (1,3,2);
No. 32 Florida State def. Furman 6-1
1. #107 Dominic Cotrone (FS) def. Andrew Mellow (FUR) 6-1, 6-1
2. #99 Benjamin Lock (FS) def. Alex Christ (FUR) 6-3, 2-2
3. Jordan Kelly-Houston (FS) def. Joel Cook (FUR) 7-5, 6-4
4. Anderson Reed (FS) def. Matt Browne (FUR) 6-1, 6-3
5. Andres Bucaro (FS) def. Jacob Behal (FUR) 7-6 (7-2), 6-3
6. Michael Rinaldi (FS) def. Robbie Aru (FUR) 6-1, 6-1
Order of finish: Singles (1,2,4,6,3,5)
1. Michael Rinaldi/Dominic Cotrone (FS) def. Richard Casagrande/Andrew Mellow (FUR) 8-3
2. João Gauer/Blake Davis (FS) def. Matt Browne/Tyler Droll (FUR) 8-2
Order of finish: Doubles (2,1)