October 27th, 2016

UF’s Kuhlman, FSU’s Iradukunda Among Winners at ITA Southeast Regionals Tennis, Advance to National Indoors

College Tennis
From left: Josie Kuhlman and Belinda Woolcock

From left: Josie Kuhlman and Belinda Woolcock

A University of Florida women’s player had a big week as men’s and women’s singles and doubles individual winners were determined on Monday at the ITA Southeast Regional Championships Presented by Oracle, held in Tallahassee and Gainesville.

UF junior Josie Kuhlman won the doubles and lost in the singles final at the ITA Southeast Regional Championships in Gainesville.

In the singles final the No. 89-ranked Kuhlman was edged by University of Georgia freshman Eleni Christofi 7-6(5), 2-6, 7-6(4). In the first set Kuhlman led 4-0 before losing in a tiebreak, and in the third set she broke for a 6-5 lead but was unable to serve out the match.

In the doubles final Kuhlman and UF senior Belinda Woolcock edged Georgia’s Christofi and Kennedy Shaffer 6-7(2), 7-5, 10-8. Kuhlman and Woolcock with the win earn an automatic berth into the 2016 USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships on Nov. 3-6 at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing, NY.

“It was a terrific day of tennis,” said Gators Head Coach Roland Thornqvist. “I thought it was a Top 5 match-up in the singles final. One point here or there and the outcome could have gone either way, as could the doubles…When Josie trains, it’s full-speed all the time. I have a lot of confidence that she’ll be strong until the last ball.”

Among Florida women players, the University of Miami’s Sinead Lohan also qualifies for the USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships singles as an All-American consolation winner.

On the men’s side, headed to New York and the indoor championships is Florida State University junior Guy Iradukunda, who in the men’s final in Tallahassee defeated Georgia’s No. 16-ranked Wayne Montgomery 3-6, 6-1, 6-3 to claim the Southeast Regional singles championship.

“One of the things that Guy did, he just got better every match,” said FSU Head Coach Dwayne Hultquist said. “He knocked off really good players, and in the finals Wayne (Montgomery) is one of the best players in the country.”

Iradukunda becomes just the second Seminole to win the ITA Regional singles title, joining Clint Bowles in 2009.

“I’m really happy that I won. It means everything,” Iradukunda said.

In the men’s doubles final, UF freshman Johannes Ingildsen and sophomore Alfredo Perez, the No. 6 seeds, defeated the University of South Florida’s unseeded team of Justin Roberts and Peter Bertran 6-3, 3-6, 10-3.

Ingildsen/Perez earlier pulled off two upset wins, toppling No. 1 seeds Findel-Hawkins/Muscheites (UNF) in the semifinals, and No. 3 Lomacki/Andrews (Miami) in the quarterfinals. It was the first tournament for Ingildsen/Perez as a team.

“We are so proud of what Alfredo and Johannes accomplished these last few days,” said UF Assistant Coach Tanner Stump. “To come in with very little experience together and get the job done against our extremely tough regional field is a huge compliment to their chemistry and work together. They are learning to compete and communicate very well with each other and we hope this is just the tip of the iceberg for them.”

UF’s Perez also received an automatic USTA/ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships singles bid as an All-American quarterfinalist.

For full results go to www.itatennis.com/Events/ITA_Regional_Championships_Presented_By_Oracle.htm.