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DAHLONEGA, GA – The No. 25 North Georgia men's tennis team snapped a two-match skid on Sunday afternoon as they rallied late to knock off No. 33 USC Aiken at the North Georgia Tennis Complex in Peach Belt Conference action.
The Saints (13-4, 3-3) pick up their first victory since earning their first-ever national ranking in school history earlier this week, while the Pacers (5-5, 0-5) fall back to the .500 mark and remain winless in league action.
North Georgia jumped out of the gates quickly in doubles action, as Brandon Sloan and Giovani Santos made quick work of Guilherme Destefani and Lucas Gobbi at No. 3 doubles, defeating Pacer duo 8-4.
After USC Aiken captured their first point of the day at No. 2 doubles, Felipe Friedrich and Mateus Camasmie came out firing and upset the 24th-ranked combo of Patrick Stiebinger and Nathan Berlyn at No. 1 doubles. The 8-5 win for the Saints handed North Georgia a 2-1 edge heading to singles action.
The Saints were greeted rudely heading to singles play, as USC Aiken quickly took back all the momentum when they picked up three straight wins to take a 4-2 lead. Stienbinger won a three set thriller over Camasmie at No. 2, while Mathew Guida fell in three sets at No. 3 and Rodrigo Magan faltered in straight sets at No. 4.
Suddenly finding themselves down in the match, North Georgia would need to capture all three remaining matches to pick up the win. Friedrich did his part at No. 1 singles, rallying from down a set to overcome Destefani 5-7, 6-3, 6-3.
After Sloan made quick work of Josh Rees at No. 6 singles with a 6-4, 6-2 victory, it all came down to No. 5 singles and a match that would decide the outcome.
Santos and Gobbi went head-to-head in a grueling three set match that saw Gobbi quickly take a one set lead with a 2-6 win in the opener. Santos would dig deep and force a third set when he rallied for a 7-5 victory in the second set, and would seal the win for the Saints with a 6-2 win in the final set to hand North Georgia a 5-4 victory at home.
The win over the ranked Pacers is the second victory for North Georgia this season over a nationally ranked opponent after defeating 11th-ranked Flagler earlier this year. That road win also came at a 5-4 score.
Friedrich continued his impressive work at No. 1 singles, improving to 11-4 on the year with the victory. Sloan's must win at No. 6 singles was his seventh of the year in that slot as he ran his mark to 7-2 in the No. 6 position and 11-5 overall. Camasmie/Friedrich (pictured below) are 10-5 on the season at No. 1 doubles, while Santos/Sloan are 10-3 at No. 3 doubles.
The Saints return to action on Wednesday, April 4, as they welcome Young Harris to town for a non-conference showdown. First serve is slated for 2:00 p.m.
#25 North Georgia 5, #33 USC Aiken 4
Apr 01, 2012 at Dahlonega, GA (North Georgia Tennis Complex)
|1. Felipe Friedrich (NGMEN) def. Guilherme Destefani (USCAM) 5-7, 6-3, 6-3|
|2. Patrick Stiebinger (USCAM) def. Mateus Camasmie (NGMEN) 6-4, 5-7, 6-3|
|3. Bruno Orlandini (USCAM) def. Mathew Guida (NGMEN) 4-6, 6-2, 6-4|
|4. Harrison Silvy (USCAM) def. Rodrigo Magan (NGMEN) 6-3, 6-3|
|5. Giovani Santos (NGMEN) def. Lucas Gobbi (USCAM) 2-6, 7-5, 6-2|
|6. Brandon Sloan (NGMEN) def. Josh Rees (USCAM) 6-4, 6-2|
|1. Felipe Friedrich/Mateus Camasmie (NGMEN) def. #24 Patrick Stiebinger/Nathan Berlyn (USCAM) 8-5|
|2. Harrison Silvy/Bruno Orlandini (USCAM) def. Mathew Guida/Rodrigo Magan (NGMEN) 8-2|
|3. Giovani Santos/Brandon Sloan (NGMEN) def. Guilherme Destefani/Lucas Gobbi (USCAM) 8-4|
|USC Aiken 5-5, 0-5 PBC; National ranking #33|
|North Georgia 13-4, 3-3 PBC; National ranking #25|
|Order of finish: Doubles (3,2,1); Singles (4,2,3,1,6,5)|
|Official: CJ Weaver T-6:05 A-104|