SEC Tournament Championship
W, 4-0

It's Official! Men's Tennis Crowned SEC Tournament Champions; Stuns No. 2 Florida, 4-0 4/20/03 (Photos courtsey of J.D. Johnson/The Daily Mississippian)

OXFORD, Miss. - The dream has now become a reality. The eighth-ranked Vanderbilt men's tennis team won its first-ever Southeastern Conference Tournament championship, as it shocked No. 2-ranked Florida, 4-0, on Sunday at the Palmer/Salloum Tennis Center. The match was concluded indoors due to inclement weather in the Oxford area.

While the 2003 season is still far from over, the Commodores have come so far in just one season. Just one year ago, they finished the SEC regular season with a 1-10 record and a first-round exit at the SEC Tournament. With Sunday's win, Vanderbilt improved its overall mark to an incredible 22-3, which includes a 9-2 mark in SEC regular-season action. Sunday's triumph was also sweet, as it was the first time the Commodores had defeated the Gators since 1989.

It was only befitting for junior Bobby Reynolds to close out the match for the Commodores. The second-ranked Reynolds scored a 7-6, 6-3 (2) victory over 18th-ranked Hamid Mirzadeh at the No. 1 position. Reynolds has had the most prolific season ever for a Vanderbilt men's tennis player. With Sunday's win, he is now 40-6 on the year, which includes 21-1 dual-match record. It was also his second win over Mirzadeh this season.

The Commodores got off to another strong start, as they captured the critical doubles point. In the two teams earlier meeting this year in Gainesville, Florida won two of three doubles matches, which ended up being the decisive point in the match.

On Sunday, Vanderbilt was able to exact a little revenge, as it won two of the three matches. For the third-straight day, junior Zach Dailey and sophomore Scott Brown clinched the doubles point for the 'Dores at the No. 3 position. On this afternoon, they gutted out a 9-7 victory over the 52nd-ranked team of Troy Hahn and Matt Behrmann. Dailey and Brown's win came after the other two matches had been split.

The Commodores' first doubles win came at the No. 1 position when the 28th-ranked team of Reynolds and Lewie Smith upset Hamid Mirzadeh and Chris McDonald, 8-6. This was the second time Vanderbilt's top doubles duo had defeated this season. Reynolds and Smith improve to 16-9 on the season with the win.

The other two points for Vanderbilt came at the No. 2 and No. 3 singles positions. Junior Chad Harris, who is currently ranked No. 15 nationally, scored another major upset in defeating No. 3-ranked Janne Holmia in convincing fashion, 6-3, 6-3. For Harris, it was his 31st singles victory of the year and his 16th dual-match win.

Vanderbilt's first singles point came from sophomore Matt Lockin, who came into the match ranked 55th nationally. Lockin had no problems on Sunday, as he defeated Troy Hahn, 6-3, 6-3. Lockin, who is in his first season at Vanderbilt after transferring from the University of Michigan, used one break of serve in each set en route to notching his 25th win of the year.

The Commodores will now set their sights on their biggest goal, which is winning a NCAA Championship. The NCAA Tournament kicks off on May 9 with the first and second rounds, held at 16 campus sites.


Vanderbilt Florida Winner Score
Bobby Reynolds (#2) Hamid Mirzadeh (#18) VU 7-6 (2), 6-3
Chad Harris (#15) Janne Holmia (#3) VU 6-3, 6-3
Matt Lockin (#55) Troy Hahn VU 6-3, 6-3
Scott Brown Olivier Levant DNF 6-2, 2-1 (UF Led)
Zach Dailey Matt Behrmann DNF 3-1 (UF Led)
Lewie Smith Eleazar Magallan DNF 2-1 (UF Led)


Vanderbilt Florida Winner Score
Reynolds/Smith (#28) Mirzadeh/McDonald (#17) VU 8-6
Lockin/Harris Levant/Magallan (#39) UF 8-6
Dailey/Brown Hahn/Behrmann (#52) VU 9-7




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