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May 9, 2007
ALTAMONTE SPRINGS, Fla. - The fourth-ranked USC Upstate men's tennis team fell behind 2-1 after doubles play, but rallied to win four singles matches over 17th-ranked Concordia (N.Y.) to take a 5-2 victory and advance to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Division II National Championships Wednesday afternoon at Sanlando Park.
Upstate (23-4) advances to play West Florida, which was a 6-1 winner over Abilene Christian, at 10:30 Thursday morning. The Spartans have already faced West Florida once this season, dropping a 6-3 decision in the second match of the season.
Concordia (18-3) claimed wins at the No. 1 and No. 3 doubles positions. Upstate's Sandy Franz (pictured) and Javier Tori teamed to take an 8-4 victory over Vlad Malkin and Kirill Azovtsev at No. 2 doubles to earn the first point of the match. Concordia countered when Josep Molet and Henning Ruenz claimed an 8-5 victory over Sebastian Gonzales-Orbegoso and Leandro Osorio at the No. 3 spot to tie the match at 1-1. The Clippers pulled ahead 2-1 when Alex Grubin and Rodrigo Teixeira claimed an 8-5 victory over Stefan Dumitrescu and Renzo Airaldi at the No. 1 position.
Upstate answered when it needed to in singles play. Gonzales-Orbegoso avenged his doubles loss with a 7-5, 6-1 victory over Azovtsev at No. 4 singles and his victory started a trend for the Spartans. Tori took his match at the No. 3 spot by 6-4, 6-4 scores over Teixeira. Jack Roux, who clinched the Mid-Atlantic Regional Championship for the Spartans Sunday, claimed a 7-5, 6-4 victory over Nik Boerger at the No. 6 position to give Upstate a 4-2 lead. The Spartans claimed the victory when Franz defeated Molet by scores of 6-2, 7-5 at the No. 2 spot to give Upstate the five points needed for the team victory.