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Florida Gators men and women sweep SEC tennis tournament titles

GAINESVILLE — The Florida men's tennis team completed an unexpected run to its fourth SEC tournament title Sunday, blanking Kentucky 4-0 at Linder Stadium, while the highly ranked UF women beat host Tennessee 4-0 for their 17th SEC title.

It marked the third time that both programs captured the league tournament title in the same season (2000, 2005).

The 17th-ranked Gators men (18-8) came into the event as the No. 5 seed and beat three higher seeds, including No. 2-ranked Tennessee, becoming just the second team in the 22-year history of the event to win the championship with four victories in four days without the benefit of a first-round bye. Ole Miss was the other in 1996.

"Four matches in four days in the best tennis conference, or at least as good as anyplace else in the country, they have a lot to be proud of," coach Andy Jackson said. "Now we've got a chance to host an NCAA regional, we're improving, and we're very excited."

UF senior Alexandre Lacroix earned tournament MVP honors and was an all-tournament selection with Nassim Slilam.

The Gators now await their NCAA Tournament draw, which will be announced May 3.

The top-seeded and second-ranked UF women (25-1) have dominated the SEC tournament, winning 17 times in the event's 24-year history.

"We take pride in our fitness and our durability and grit," coach Roland Thornqvist said. "Winning a three-day event in the heat against a field as tough as the SEC means a lot. It tells you where you are heading into the NCAA Championships."

Sophomore Allie Will was named the event's MVP and was joined on the all-tournament team by freshman Olivia Janowicz.

The women's NCAA field will also be announced May 3.

Florida Gators men and women sweep SEC tennis tournament titles 04/24/11 [Last modified: Sunday, April 24, 2011 11:15pm]
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