ORLANDO, Fla. – The No. 22 UCF men's tennis team extended their win streak to seven matches with a 4-3 win over Pennsylvania on Tuesday night.
"We've been having the right attitude during this winning streak," said UCF assisstant coach Georgi Rumenov. "The guys have been fighting really hard, trying to be more positive. I think that's a really big improvement from last year. Obviously they have been playing better this year and their levels are way higher but the main thing is their attitude."
The doubles point was close throughout. The Knights struck first on court three as Mikhail Sokolovskiy and Alan Rubio cruised to a 6-1 victory over Aditya Gupta and Harsh Parikh. Penn caught stride and grabbed the second doubles court in a tight 6-4 battle as Jason Hildebrandt and Edoardo Graziani edged Trey Hilderbrand and Bogdan Pavel. The Quakers clinched the doubles point with a win at the top doubles spot where Dmitry Shatalin and Kevin Zhu narrowly defeated No. 7 Juan Pablo Grassi Mazzuchi and Gabriel Decamps 7-6 (7-4).
Singles play saw the Knights take two courts after splitting the first sets equally. No. 19 Decamps was the first to finish, winning 6-3, 6-1 over Graziani. Sokolovskiy followed suit, winning 7-5, 6-3 on court six, bringing his overall record to 7-1 this season.
Penn struck back by taking two singles courts, putting them in front 3-2. Court two was won by Zhu as he ended Grassi Mazzuchi's seven-match winning streak by a 6-4, 6-4 decision. Court four fell next as Gupta edged Pavel 7-5, 7-5.
UCF had control of the remaining two courts, both in third sets, and never surrendered their edge. Rubio went on to beat Shatalin 2-6, 6-1, 6-2 to tie the match at three all. The match rested in the fate of court five, where Hilderbrand went on to top Cancilla 7-6 (9-7), 3-6, 6-4.
The Knights have now strung together seven straight wins, dating back to Feb. 2 when UCF went on to dominate Illinois 6-1. Since that time, the Knights have outscored their opponents 33-14, picking up a total of three Power 6 wins along the way.
UCF is right back in action at 6 p.m. on Wednesday as they host South Alabama at the UCF Collegiate Tennis Center at the USTA National Campus.
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