Auburn, Alabama (EETV) - Raul Dobai helped No. 30 Auburn men’s tennis take down No. 31 Ole Miss with a tiebreaker win to advance in the SEC Tournament. This is the Tigers’ first tournament win since defeating Arkansas in 2015.
Tiger duo Jan Galka and Tyler Stice gave Auburn a head start with a 6-3 win on court two. No. 11 Tad Maclean and Finn Murgett edged No. 23 Finn Reyolds and Lukas Engelhardt with a 7-0 tiebreak win to earn the doubles point. The matches on courts one and three went to tiebreakers.
The Tigers went ahead 3-1 with a singles win by Maclean over John Hallquist Lithen (6-4, 6-3) on court three. Will Nolan had a three-set victory (3-6, 6-2, 6-3) over Jan Soren Hain on court six.
Ole Miss tied the team score with wins on court five, one and two. In the final match, Dobai was down 2-5 before he won three straight points to tie with Engelhardt. The Rebel player expanded to a 6-4 lead until Dobai battled from behind to win 8-6, giving Auburn the 4-3 win.
“As a team, we’ve come so close so many times before this year, and it actually came down to me against Kentucky when I lost 4-3 after being up almost match point,” Dobai said. “Now, I came back from match point down to win this one. Having the guys behind me and just staying the course, it paid off in the end. I’m really happy and thankful.”
Auburn advances to the SEC Quarterfinals against No. 2 South Carolina Friday at 10 a.m. CT. The rest of the tournament will continue until the championship on Sunday.
“I always say that the hardest round is actually the first round, getting through it. Then, you can almost take a deep breath,” Coach Reynolds said. “That’s what we’ll do. We’ll rest up, and now, we can take a deep breath and get ready for tomorrow with South Carolina and go out and fight like we always do.”
#24 Nikola Slavic (MISS) def. #28 Tyler Stice (AUB) 6-2, 3-6, 6-1
Finn Reynolds (MISS) def. Jan Galka (AUB) 6-3, 4-6, 6-3
Tad Maclean (AUB) def. John Hallquist Lithen (MISS) 6-4, 6-3
Raul Dobai (AUB) def. Lukas Engelhardt (MISS) 6-2 ,5-7, 7-6 (8-6)
Simon Junk (MISS) def. Finn Murgett (AUB) 6-3, 6-1
Will Nolan (AUB) def. Jan Soren Hain (MISS) 3-6, 6-2, 6-3
#11 Maclean/Murgett (AUB) v #23 Reynolds/Engelhardt (MISS) 7-6 (7-0)
Galka/Stice (AUB) def. Soren Hain/Junk (MISS) 6-3
Dobai/Jackson Ross (AUB) v Slavic/Lithen (MISS) 6-6 (6-5) unfinished