No. 10 Kentucky Concludes Regular Season With Win at No. 35 Mississippi State
STARKVILLE, Miss. – During its last regular season match on Sunday afternoon, No. 10 Kentucky earned a 6-1 victory over No. 35 Mississippi State at the Rula Tennis Pavilion.
With the win, the Wildcats move to 19-6 overall and 10-2 in Southeastern Conference matches, locking up a top-four finish in the conference standings. The MSU Bulldogs finished the season with a 14-11 record (4-8 SEC).
UK had impressive performances on Sunday afternoon and started the day in dominant fashion during doubles competition. The blue and white claimed the first point by winning on courts two and three, manned by Gabriel Diallo and Joshua Lapadat as well as Liam Draxl and Alexandre Leblanc, respectively, in straight sets by a 6-1 result.
Sophomore Lapadat, the 117th-ranked player, continued his overpowering performance in singles competition. He won against Alberto Colas in straight sets by a 6-1, 6-3 result to earn his team-best 18th win this spring.
With the match at 2-0, No. 13 Diallo extended the Wildcats’ lead by picking up his second ranked win of the year. The junior won against No. 74 Nemanja Malesevic 6-2, 7-6(7-4) and now stands at 28-4 overall on the year.
Musitelli went on to clinch the match for Kentucky with a win on court four. After dropping the first set, the Dijon, France native locked in during the second and third to take down Carles Hernandez and notched UK’s 19th team win of the year.
With two of the three remaining courts entering a third set, both No. 69 Hurrion and JJ Mercer played a third set first to 10. Captain Hurrion finished first, winning the set 10-2 and improved to 4-0 from the three spot. Mercer was unable to overcome Davide Tortorta and fell by a 3-6, 7-6(7-5), 1-0(10-7) result.
On court one, No. 21 Draxl and No. 27 Florian Broska had already started their third set and continued to play it out. The Newmarket, Ontario native managed to prevail as he picked up his seventh win over a ranked opponent, winning 7-5, 4-6, 6-3 and putting the match result 6-1, Kentucky.
Now that the Wildcats have concluded their regular season, the next matches will come in the postseason. Kentucky will head to Athens, Georgia, for the SEC Tournament, set to begin on Wednesday. By securing a top four finish in the conference standings, UK’s first match will be played on Friday. Tickets can be purchased here.
#10 Kentucky 6, #35 Mississippi State 1
1. #21 Liam Draxl (UK) def. #27 Florian Broska (MS) 7-5, 4-6, 6-3
2. #13 Gabriel Diallo (UK) def. #74 Nemanja Malesevic (MS) 6-2, 7-6 (7-4)
3. #69 Millen Hurrion (UK) def. Gregor Ramskogler (MS) 5-7, 7-5, 1-0 (10-2)
4. Francois Musitelli (UK) def. Carles Hernandez (MS) 2-6, 6-1, 6-1
5. #117 Joshua Lapadat (UK) def. Alberto Colas (MS) 6-1, 6-3
6. Davide Tortora (MS) def. JJ Mercer (UK) 3-6, 7-6 (7-5), 1-0 (10-7)
Order of finish: 5, 2, 4*, 3, 6, 1
1. #46 Florian Broska/Gregor Ramskogler (MS) vs. Millen Hurrion/Francois Musitelli (UK) 4-3, unfinished 2. #87 Gabriel Diallo/Joshua Lapadat (UK) def. Alberto Colas/Davide Tortora (MS) 6-1
3. Liam Draxl/Alexandre LeBlanc (UK) def. Carles Hernandez/Nemanja Malesevic (MS) 6-1
Order of finish: 2, 3*
For the latest on the Kentucky men’s tennis team, follow @UKMensTennis on Twitter and Facebook, @kentuckymenstennis on Instagram, and on the web at UKAthletics.com.
– GO CATS –
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