Knights Welcome No. 4 Ohio State for Midweek Duel

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ORLANDO - The UCF men's tennis team (4-8) is set for a massive midweek matchup with the nation's fourth-ranked squad, Ohio State, at the USTA National Campus on Wednesday night at 5 pm. The Knights return to Orlando after their best road stint of the season where they took two of three with crucial wins over Florida Atlantic and conference foes SMU.


Following just their second homestand of the season in late February, UCF will look to build on the momentum from an exciting trip to the Midwest last week. After keeping it close with Oklahoma State, the Knights picked up a thrilling victory in Dallas, 4-2, against SMU. The match, which went more than three and half hours, concluded with a Liam Branger win in his first match on court four.  

Bogdan Pavel broke the program record with his 65th career doubles win which propelled the Knights to snatch the match's first point. Playing alongside Lleyton Cronje, Pavel solidified himself as one of the greatest athletes the school has seen, a constant in the squad over the past five seasons. Yassine Dlimi took home his first collegiate doubles win with Francisco Llanes which clinched the squad's first doubles point since North Florida on Feb. 24.

The Knights continue to climb up the rankings, landing at 67th in the latest ITA release. Pavel and Cronje remain at 76 in the doubles rankings after winning their fourth match of the season at SMU. Pavel also features in the singles ranking at 105, the first Knight to land on the rankings this season.


No. 4 Ohio State arrived in Orlando off the back of a disappointing loss at No. 5 South Carolina, 1-4. The Buckeyes have shown the ability to bounce back after defeat though, taking their best win of the season against the National Champions Virginia, 4-0, after losing to the Knights next opponent, No. 3 Texas. The Big 10 staples are led by No. 20 JJ Tracy and No. 26 James Trotter, whose undefeated thus far, with wins on courts two through five. Along with No. 39 Cannon Kingsley, No. 52 Alexander Bernard, No. 58 Justin Boulais, and No. 116 Robert Cash, the Buckeyes have talent throughout.

This will be the second meeting between the two this season and the third in the past two seasons. The Knights traveled up to Columbus for the ITA Kickoff Weekend earlier this season, losing the match, 0-4.