Cats defeat Vanderbilt 4-3 for fourth straight victory


Gabriel Diallo tracks down a ball during the University of Kentucky vs. Louisiana State University men’s tennis meet on Sunday, Feb. 21, 2021, at the Hilary J. Boone Tennis Complex in Lexington, Kentucky. Kentucky won 4-0. Photo by Jack Weaver | Staff

Samantha Money

No. 12 Kentucky Men’s Tennis defeated No. 41 Vanderbilt 4-3 at the Currey Tennis Center on Friday night in Nashville.

The win moves Kentucky to 14-4 this season and 5-1 in the SEC. UK has now won four matches in a row.

The Cats started off well, clinching the first point of the night via the doubles matches. 

Court one, consisting of No. 114 Millen Hurrion and No. 61 Francois Musitelli, saw a quick win over their opponents, winning the match 6-2. 

The next win came from No. 95 Joshua Lapadat and JJ Mercer on court two, with the pair securing a 6-4 victory over the Dores. These two wins allowed Kentucky to take the doubles point and head into the singles matches with the early 1-0 lead.

Sophomore Yasha Zemel could not overcome Vanderbilt’s Siim Troost, losing both sets 3-6, tying the match at one all, but the Cats persisted.

No. 9 Gabriel Diallo and Musitelli scored back-to-back points for Kentucky, with Diallo beating Marcus Ferreira 6-4 and 6-4, while Musitelli out-played Max Freeman 6-3 and 6-3. 

The win for Diallo keeps him undefeated this season in singles matches, while Musitelli remains undefeated against SEC opponents. 

With the energy high for the Cats, Lapadat brought in Kentucky’s fourth point of the night with a hard-fought win over Jeremie Casabon. Lapadat won his first and third sets against the Vandy player 6-2 and 6-1.

The Dores put up a fight, defeating both Kentucky’s team captain Hurrion and No. 94 Liam Draxl in singles, but the Cats came out victorious in the end finishing with the four points needed. 

Kentucky will next travel to Oxford, Mississippi to take on No. 39 Ole Miss on Sunday, March 27 at 2 p.m. EST at the Palmer/Salloum Tennis Center.