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UK men's tennis blanks Western Michigan in NCAA regional opener

With singles wins from Tom Jomby, Kevin Lai and Grant Roberts, coupled with domination of the doubles point on all three courts, the Kentucky men's tennis team blanked Western Michigan 4-0 in the first round of the NCAA Tournament to advance to the regional finals on Saturday.

UK faces Virginia Tech at 2 p.m.

Kentucky got off to a fast start in the doubles, taking major leads on all three courts. The tandem of Juan Pablo Murra and senior Anthony Rossi took the early spotlight, capturing an 8-1 win. Beck Pennington and Ryuji Hirooka next won 8-3.

After doubles, Jomby eased his way through a 14-minute first set and fought his way through the second, taking his match 6-0, 6-4.

Lai earned Kentucky's third point, 6-2, 7-6 (3). He was broken to start the second set but rallied to force a tiebreak and ultimately take the set.

Tates Creek graduate Roberts was the singles star, stepping up with a 6-1, 6-1 domination of Andrew Cahn to secure the 4-0 win and a spot in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. Roberts was not broken during the match, and won 12 of the 14 games played.

"I thought our intensity was really, really good," said UK Coach Cedric Kauffmann. "I think it is hopefully going to carry on to tomorrow."

Virginia Tech 4, Michigan 2: The third-seeded Hokies pulled off the upset of No. 2 Michigan, winning four out of five singles matches while giving up the doubles point to the Wolverines.

"What a great win for our program," Virginia Tech Coach Jim Thompson said. "We have been fighting hard all year and have had a lot of 4-3 matches go against us. Our guys did a great job battling today."

Andreas Bjerrehus, Hunter Koontz, Joao Monterio and Lucas Oliveira won the Nos. 2, 3, 4 and 5 singles matches for the Hokies.

Kentucky 4, Western Michigan 0


No. 1: Anthony Rossi (UK) led Nadin Indre 7-6 (5), 6-6 (match abandoned); No. 2: Tom Jomby (UK) def. Ross VanderPloeg 6-0, 6-4; No. 3: Aaron Wong (WM) led Charles Minc 7-6 (5), 1-6, 4-1 (match abandoned); No. 4: Kevin Lai (UK) def. Ruben Greiner 6-2, 7-6 (3); No. 5: Grant Roberts (UK) def. Andrew Cahn 6-1, 6-1; No. 6: Beck Pennington (UK) vs. Pablo Mora (match abandoned).


No. 1: Jomby/Lai (UK) led Indre/Greiner 6-3 (match abandoned); No. 2: Ryuji Hirooka/Pennington def. Wong/Jim Beckwith 8-3; No. 3: Rossi/Juan Pablo Murra (UK) def. VanderPloeg/Cahn 8-1.

Virginia Tech 4, Michigan 2


No. 1: Evan King (UM) def. Amerigo Contini 6-4, 1-6, 6-1; No. 2: Andreas Bjerrehus (VT) def. Alex Petrone 6-3, 6-7 (3), 6-4; No. 3: Hunter Koontz (VT) def. Vlad Stefan 6-3, 6-3; No. 4: Joao Monterio (VT) def. Barrett Franks 2-6, 7-5, 6-4; No. 5: Lucas Oliveira (VT) def. Michael Zhu 6-1, 6-4; No. 6: Alex Buzzi (UM) led Aaron Gomez 6-2, 1-3 (match abandoned).


No. 1: King/Alex Buzzi (UM) def. Bjerrehus/Koontz 8-3; No. 2: Petrone/Zhu (UM) vs. Contini/Marko Lovrinovic 4-4 (match abandoned); No. 3: Shaun Bernstein/Franks (UM) def. Monteiro/Oliveira 8-4.

NCAA regional

Friday's first round

Virginia Tech 4, Michigan 2

Kentucky 4, Western Michigan 0

Saturday's second round

2 p.m.: Virginia Tech (16-9) vs. Kentucky (21-11)


Adults, $6; children, seniors, $4

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