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How sweep it is. The TCU men’s tennis team swept their third straight team in this year’s postseason play to advance to this week’s Elite Eight. TCU defeated NC State 4-0 on the purple courts in Fort Worth on Saturday.

The No. 1 seed TCU Horned Frogs (26-4) move on to the quarterfinal round and will face the No. 8 seed Kentucky Wildcats (20-10) on Thursday, May 19, in Champaign, Illinois. This will be TCU’s fifth Elite Eight appearance in the last seven postseasons. No other program in the nation has that many appearances during that span. This is also TCU’s 12th Elite Eight appearance in program history.

On the hottest day of the year, the team got hot when they needed to during the dual on Saturday. Several times, both in doubles and singles, a TCU court was down a break but found a way to overcome the deficit. The 4-0 sweep was much closer than the final score.

Once again, TCU won the doubles point. It was their 25th time (out of 30 matches) to win the doubles point. This season, it was also the 18th time that TCU won the doubles point without losing a match. The Frogs are now 54-16 in doubles matches this year.

Sander Jong and Luis Maxted, playing at No. 2, got an early break in their set and stayed on serve to win their set, 6-4. On Court No. 3, Juan Carlos Aguilar and Pedro Vives went down a break at 3-5 and clawed their way back, winning four straight games to win their set 7-5 to clinch the doubles point. Luc Fomba and Jake Fearnley, the nation’s top-ranked duo and playing at No. 1, were in their tiebreaker when the point was won.

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Singles play was close on every court. TCU won four of the six first sets. Jong was the first to add to the Frogs’ score, winning his match at No. 3, 6-3, 6-3. This was his 21st singles win this season, which is a team-high. Fearnley had a hard-fought first set, ultimately winning that one 7-5. He was down 1-4, early in his second set and came back to force the tiebreaker. He won the tiebreaker 7-3 to win the set 7-6 and give the Frogs a 3-0 score. Fomba clinched the win after winning a late break in the second set. He won at No. 1, 6-4, 6-4.

Two matches had just started their third sets when the dual was clinched. Tomas Jirousek, at No. 6, lost his first set 3-6, then won his second 6-2, and was 1-1 in the third. The opposite happened to Aguilar at No. 2. He won his first set 6-3, then lost the second 2-6. He also was at 1-1 in the third when the dual was one. Vives, at No. 5, was still playing in the second set. He was down 6-7, 3-4.

“I’m really proud of the guys,” said head coach David Roditi after the dual. “The way they competed in the hottest May 14th that Fort Worth has ever seen, I’m really proud. No. 2 doubles and No. 3 doubles came through in the doubles point, that was a big one. NC State has won a lot of doubles points this season, and they were probably really hoping to win that, so coming back from down a break at No. 3 was excellent. In the first sets, we had a lot of chances early, and our guys just kept their poise. The way they finished the first and second sets, finding ways to break at 4-4 or 5-5 or even 6-6, I just couldn’t be prouder of this team. The way Fearnley came back and won, the way Sander closed out his set, and the way Fomba closed out his match, I just couldn’t be happier for this team. They are the ones suffering in the heat, all we can do is try to get them prepared, and nobody does a better job of that than Devin Bowen. Now, here we go, Elite 8 against a team that we haven’t played all year, Kentucky. I’m so happy to get this final win in front of our home fans; they have been so great all year. Now we’re off to Champaign! Go Frogs!!”

Next up: No. 1 TCU will face No. 8 Kentucky in the Elite Eight on Thursday, May 19, at 3 p.m. at the University of Illinois in Champaign, Illinois.

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