Winning the doubles point and taking four singles matches to a third set, Auburn battled to the finish before No. 11 Florida posted a 6-1 win Sunday in SEC men’s tennis action at the Alfred A. Ring Tennis Complex in Gainesville, Fla.
The Tigers started strong in doubles. On court one, Tad Maclean and Finn Murgett put together a convincing upset of the Gators’ No. 45 nationally ranked tandem of Duarte Vale and Sam Riffice by a 6-2 score. On court three, Tyler Stice and Jan Galka clinched the doubles point for the Tigers with a 6-4 victory over Ben Shelton and Andy Andrade.
After Florida picked up straight-set wins in singles on courts one and six, the remaining four matches in play on courts two through five went to three sets.
Maxwell Giddens had won his first set 6-3 and Tad Maclean captured his first set 7-6 in a 7-3 tiebreaker; both fell 6-3 in their third sets. Tyler Stice, who captured his second set 7-5, came from down 5-1 in the third stanza to make the score 5-4 before Sam Riffice, ranked No. 8 nationally, won 6-4 to take the match for the Gators. Jan Galka, who lost his first set in a tiebreaker and took the second stanza 6-2, fought to a narrow 7-5 loss in the third set.
Auburn is now 3-6; Florida is now 6-1. The Tigers open SEC play at home on Friday, February 26, hosting Vanderbilt at 1 p.m. All Auburn home tennis action is at the Yarbrough Tennis Center (1717 Richland Road, Auburn). Fans wearing face coverings are welcome to attend all matches played outdoors; fans may want to bring lawn chairs or blankets for seating to remain socially distanced. If weather moves the match indoors, only participants and officials will be admitted.
Florida 6, Auburn 1
#12 Duarte Vale (UF) def. Tim Dollman (AU) 6-2, 6-2
#8 Sam Riffice (UF) def. Tyler Stice (AU) 6-2, 5-7, 6-4
#85 Andy Andrade (UF) def. Jan Galka (AU) 7-6 (7-2), 2-6, 7-5
Ben Shelton (UF) def. Tad Maclean (AU) 6-7 (3-7), 6-3, 6-3
#96 Lukas Greif (UF) def. Maxwell Giddens (AU) 3-6, 7-5, 6-3
Josh Goodger (UF) def. Spencer Gray (AU) 6-2, 6-4
Tad Maclean/Finn Murgett (AU) def. #45 Duarte Vale/Sam Riffice (UF) 6-2
Johannes Ingildsen/Will Grant (UF) def. Tom Wright/Maxwell Giddens (AU) 6-3
Jan Galka/Tyler Stice (AU) def. Ben Shelton/Andy Andrade (UF) 6-4
Time of match: 3:23; Order of finish: Doubles: 2,1,3; Singles: 1,6,2,4,5,3