After six total hours of gameplay on two different sets of courts, No. 43 Kentucky (15-12, 5-6 Southeastern Conference) ended Friday with back-to-back victories to cap off a three-match win streak. The day climaxed with a 5-2 triumph over No. 17 Georgia (11-9, 6-5 SEC) under the outdoor lights, following a 4-0 sweep of Dayton (15-7, 5-2 Atlantic 10 Conference) indoors several hours prior.
Once Friday’s early bouts of rain halted for good, Kentucky and its visiting conference foe were able to head outside for their 5 p.m. ET matchup. The Wildcats captured the opening point, coming in part by a 7-5 victory for Cesar Bougois and Kento Yamada over the nation’s 14th-ranked doubles unit of Robert Loeb and Jan Zielinski.
Georgia claimed the first two singles points to jump out to a 2-1 lead overall. But the Cats came roaring back, claiming the top four courts in descending fashion. Bourgois, one of five UK players to drop his first set, recovered momentum with a 3-6, 6-2, 6-3 win over Trent Bryde. Yamada shadowed his doubles partner, beating Loeb solo 6-4, 7-6 (3).
On the fringe of Kentucky’s penultimate match of the season, it was a pair of prolific seniors who remained standing with a chance to clinch the program’s 10thall-time win over the Bulldogs. No. 51 Ryo Matsumura picked up his team-best seventh victory over a nationally ranked opponent by defeating No. 30 Emil Reinberg 4-6, 6-3, 6-2, for which he was enthusiastically greeted by once spectating teammates in a fervent celebration that took place where he stood on the court.
Though the match had already been decided, Enzo Wallart persevered through a three-set thriller that included two straight tiebreakers while performing in the top singles slot. Wallart not only dropped the initial set, but he trailed in both the second and third stanzas. However, the Windermere, Florida native ultimately concluded the personal saga that lasted over three hours with a 4-6, 7-6 (4), 7-6 (5) win over No. 15 Zielinski in the most impressive bout of his senior campaign.
“Honestly, it’s just all heart for this team and this program,” Wallart said. “I love this team and this university, and I’d give everything for the blue and white. I wanted to show this young team an example of what Kentucky is about and give back to the unbelievable fans.”
Starting the morning under the roof of Boone Tennis Center, the Wildcats’ first conquest of the day came in a fairly routine manner. Yamada, Wallart, and freshman Kevin Huempfner earned singles wins over the Flyers.
Kentucky will conclude its 2019 regular season on Sunday against the No. 15 Tennessee Volunteers (17-6, 7-4 SEC) at 1 p.m. The match will be preceded by a brief senior day ceremony honoring Matsumura and Wallart.
For the latest on Kentucky men’s tennis, follow @UKMensTennis on Twitter and @KentuckyMensTennis on Instagram, and follow the team on the web atUKAthletics.com.
#43 Kentucky 4, Dayton 0
- #51 Ryo Matsumura (UK) vs. Jordan Benjamin (UD) 6-4, 4-4, unfinished
- Enzo Wallart (UK) def. Langford Hills (UD) 6-2, 6-2
- Kento Yamada (UK) def. Steven Karl (UD) 6-1, 6-1
- Joe DeMarco (UD) vs. Cesar Bourgois (UK) no result
- Kevin Huempfner (UK) def. Lorenzo Rollhauser (UD) 6-3, 6-2
- Jayman Jhattu (UD) vs. Parth Aggarwal (UK) no result
- Cesar Bourgois/Kento Yamada (UK) def. Langford Hills/Joe DeMarco (UD) 6-4
- Enzo Wallart/Ying-Ze Chen (UK) def. Steven Karl/Lorenzo Rollhauser (UD) 6-3
- Jordan Benjamin/Jayman Jhattu (UD) def. Kevin Huempfner/Theo McDonald (UK) 6-3
Order of finish: Doubles (1,3,2); Singles (3,2,5)
#43 Kentucky 5, #17 Georgia 2
- Enzo Wallart (UK) def. #15 Jan Zielinski (UGA) 4-6, 7-6 (4), 7-6 (5)
- #51 Ryo Matsumura (UK) def. #30 Emil Reinberg (UGA) 4-6, 6-3, 6-2
- Kento Yamada (UK) def. Robert Loeb (UGA) 6-4, 7-6 (3)
- Cesar Bourgois (UK) def. Trent Bryde (UGA) 3-6, 6-2, 6-3
- Walker Duncan (UGA) def. Kevin Huempfner (UK) 6-2, 7-5
- #122 Philip Henning (UGA) def. Parth Aggarwal (UK) 6-2, 6-2
- Cesar Bourgois/Kento Yamada (UK) def. #14 Robert Loeb/Jan Zielinski (UGA) 7-5
- Enzo Wallart/Ying-Ze Chen (UK) def. Walker Duncan/Emil Reinberg (UGA) 6-4
- Trent Bryde/Philip Henning (UGA) def. Ryo Matsumura/Kevin Huempfner (UK) 6-3
Order of finish: Doubles (3,1,2); Singles (6,5,4,3,2,1)
‑ GO CATS –
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