LEXINGTON, Ky. (FOX 56) – The eighth-seeded Kentucky Wildcats men’s tennis team will play their Super Regional match at the Hilary J. Boone Tennis Complex this Saturday at 2 p.m. ET against the nine-seeded Wake Forest Demon Deacons.
Kentucky was selected as a host for the next round after being one of the top eight teams left in the NCAA Tournament field. UK defeated DePaul and Northwestern this past weekend to advance to the Sweet 16 round.
The Wildcats swept DePaul 4-0 in the first round of the 2022 NCAA Men’s Tennis Championship on May 6 to extend their post-season play. Immediately following their win, the Cats battled from behind to take their second-round win over Northwestern 4-2.
In that match, UK set the tone in doubles securing the opening point. Initially trailing 2-3, Liam Draxl and Alexandre LeBlanc battled back to post a 6-4 win on court three over Trice Pickens and Natan Spear. Gabriel Diallo and Joshua Lapadat then earned the decisive point for the home team for the second day in a row after knocking off Simen Bratholm and Brian Berdusco in a 6-3 outcome on court two.
Northwestern picked up the first two singles matches on courts one and four to jump out to a 2-1 lead.
It wasn’t long before captain Millen Hurrion soon evened the score between the two Wildcat foes with a hard-fought victory on court three. No. 83 Hurrion, who clinched the match over DePaul in the first round to send UK to the Round of 32, topped Pickens 6-2, 2-6, 6-4 for his 19th individual win this season.
It was all blue and white from there when Diallo extended UK’s lead to 3-2 while playing on the second court. The junior, ranked 21st in the country, dropped a 6-4 opening set to Bratholm before bouncing back with 6-2, 6-4 frames to claim the point.
With the decisive point on the line, No. 113 Lapadat handily took care of business in the fifth spot against Felix Nordby. He clinched the match for Kentucky 6-1,6-1 for his team-leading 21st singles win of the year.