WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – The UCF men's tennis team was defeated by the No. 7 Wake Forest Demon Deacons by a score of 5-2 on Friday evening as the Knights faced their fourth straight ranked opponent.
The evening started off with a tight doubles segment. Wake Forest struck first on court one where Henri Squire and Eduardo Nava beat Trey Hilderbrand and Bogdan Pavel 6-3. The remaining two courts were close throughout, forcing both into tiebreakers. The Demon Deacons clinched the doubles point on court three where Bar Botzer and Morgan Dill topped Alan Rubio and JanMagnus Johnson 7-6 (7-1). Court two went unfinished as No. 6 Gabriel Decamps and Juan Pablo Grassi Mazzuchi were trailing Melios Efstahiou and Taha Baadi late in the tiebreaker.
Wake Forest was the first to claim a singles point, winning on court five as Nava defeated Johnson 6-2, 6-1. The Demon Deacons would extend their lead as Baadi beat Rubio 6-1, 6-3 on court three.
The Knights would thrust themselves back into the match with a victory on court two. No. 29 Grassi Mazzuchi took control of his match against Efstathiou, cruising to a 6-2, 6-1 win.
UCF climbed back to within one as No. 22 Decamps beat his third consecutive ranked opponent, beating No. 43 Botzer 6-4, 6-3 at the top singles spot.
The win on court one gave the Knights a chance to come back in the match. At the time of Decamps' victory, UCF was tied on court four and trailing by just a game on court six. Both matches would go into third sets.
Court six wound up deciding the match as Wake Forest's No. 67 Siddhant Banthia edged Hilderbrand in a tight third set 4-6, 6-1, 7-5. The final court would be played out and eventually went the way of the Demon Deacons as Squire narrowly beat No. 108 Pavel 4-6, 6-4, 6-4.
The Knights continue their ACC road trip as they take on Virginia on Sunday at noon. Both teams received votes in the latest Oracle/ITA rankings.
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