It was a good day for Georgia tennis on the court at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex, as both the men’s and women’s teams advanced in the NCAA Tournament.
Off the court, however, was a different story.
DawgNation reported early on Saturday morning that the Georgia men’s associate head coach Bo Hodge was “suspended indefinitely from his coaching duties” because of a “personal matter,” according to Georgia coach Manuel Diaz.
When asked for more details following the 4-1 win Saturday over South Florida that sent the Bulldogs to the Round of 16, Diaz said he could not comment any further on the situation but said that the team “is doing well” and “they are in a good place” regarding the situation.
While the men’s team dealt with the suspension, it was a quick day for Georgia women’s tennis as the Bulldogs advanced to the second round with a 4-0 win over South Carolina State.
Georgia came out solid, picking up the doubles point in a little over 20 minutes. Ellen Perez and Caroline Brinson on Court 1 along with Kennedy Shaffer and Elena Christofi on Court 2 kept South Carolina State off balance. With 6-0 wins over both South Carolina State doubles opponents, Georgia rolled right on to singles play with minimal troubles.
“I think it was really good for us to get out here and in the first round to get a win under our belt and really do it efficiently,” Brinson said. “Sometimes it’s tough to go against a team that is a little less than you, to really play up to your potential, but I think we did that and showed it through the scores and getting off the court pretty quickly.”
Singles was much of the same for the Bulldogs, with Brinson and Marta Gonzalez never releasing the 6-0 score through two sets and Perez coming up with the clinching 6-0, 6-1 win.
“We were just focusing, concentrating and keeping it at a high level which is what you want at this time of the year,” Georgia coach Jeff Wallace said.
With the win, Georgia advances to the second round of the tournament against North Carolina State on Sunday at 2 p.m. ET.
While the women had a rather smooth match, the men faced a bit of a challenge.
Georgia men’s tennis reached a high point in doubles, and the team advanced to the Round of 16 with a 4-1 win over South Florida.
Georgia took an early lead with Robert Loeb and Jan Zielinski on Court 1 winning 6-3 and Wayne Montgomery and Walker Duncan winning by a 6-2 score.
“Great doubles,” Diaz said. “Those two doubles teams [on Court 1 and Court 3] played as well as they have played all year.”
In singles, Georgia was challenged more than it had been all weekend, but finished the job.
“They were a great team, they were really good in every spot,” Zielinski said. “I think we did our best in doubles and we took care of the job in singles.”
Loeb and Emil Reinberg gave Georgia the 3-1 lead in the match before Montgomery finished it off with a 7-6 (8), 6-3 win.
Georgia men’s tennis will be back in Athens for the Round of 16 on Thursday to take on Southern Cal, which beat the Bulldogs in February, 4-0.