Wildcats advance at the NCAA Tournament

No. 1 singles and doubles teams move on
liam draxl.jpeg
Posted at 5:53 PM, May 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-24 17:53:24-04

ORLANDO, Fla. — University of Kentucky top men's tennis player Liam Draxl and his teammate Gabriel Diallo advanced to the Round of 16 at the NCAA Tournament. The No. 1 women's doubles team of Akvile Parazinskaite and Fionna Arrese also advanced to the Round of 16.

Draxl had to come from behind to win a second straight match in three sets. The No. 1 seed in the tournament lost the first set 6-3 before winning the second set, 6-4. Draxl was then trailing 3-1 in the third set before he completed the comeback to win 6-4 in the third. He advances to play Tennessee's Adam Walton on Tuesday in the Round of 16.

Diallo also lost his first set 6-4 before he settled down to close out the win 6-2 in the second set and 6-2 in the third. He moves on to face North Carolina's William Blumberg who upset the No. 3 seed in the tournament Hady Habib of Texas A&M.

Parazinskaite and Arrese also lost their first set 5-7 against the team of Brooke Killingsworth and Anna Brylin from Wake Forest. But, the Wildcats buckled down in the second. After the score was tied at 3-3, the UK duo took the second set 6-3. Doubles matches then go to a 10 point tiebreaker in the third set. Parazinskaite and Arrese fell behind 3-2 before they finished off a 10-4 win in the third set.

The win raised their record to 21-4 on the season including 7-3 against ranked teams. Killingsworth and Brylin were rated as the No. 24 tandem in the country. The Cats will face the winners of Miami’s Isabella Pfennig and Estela Perez-Somarriba vs. UCLA’s Elysia Bolton and Jada Hart on Tuesday. A match time has yet to be determined. Miami’s duo is ranked No. 22, while the Bruins are tabbed the No. 59 team in the country.