The 12th-seeded Florida men’s tennis team defeated Navy, 4-0, on Saturday afternoon at Linder Stadium at Ring Tennis Complex. The Gators advance to the second round and will face Harvard (23-2), who defeated Virginia Tech, 4-3, on Sunday at 2 p.m.
“We’re very pleased to advance,” said head coach Andy Jackson. “Navy won their conference. We were ready to play, which is a sign of respect for Navy, but we also knew that we were better than Navy. The competition level will go up drastically tomorrow with a top 25 team [No. 24 Harvard]. We’re looking forward to having a chance to secure a spot in Athens for the Round of 16.”
Florida (15-9, 7-4 SEC) wasted no time, jumping out to big leads over Navy (18-9) on all three courts in doubles action. Tripper Carleton and Nassim Slilam, pairing together for the first time all season, defeated Navy’s Peter McDonald and Calvin Mark, 8-4, on court one. UF’s Spencer Newman and Bob van Overbeek secured the doubles point with an 8-3 win over Marcus Rebersak and Tyler Burnett on court two. Michael Alford and Florent Diep led 6-3 when their match was halted.
Slilam made quick work of McDonald at No. 3 singles, winning 6-0, 6-0 to give the Gators a 2-0 lead overall. On court one, van Overbeek earned another point for Florida with a 6-1, 6-0 victory over Rebersak and shortly after Diep clinched the team victory with a 6-0, 6-0 win over Gutsche at No. 5 singles. The three remaining Gators all led in their matches when play was halted.
Florida and Harvard will face each other for the seventh time in school history on Sunday, with the two teams splitting the previous six meetings, 3-3. The last meeting between the Gators and the Crimson came in 2005, when UF won 4-0.
Sunday’s second round match is scheduled to start at 2 p.m.
Courtesy UF Communications