MIAMI, Fla. – The Presbyterian College men’s tennis team makes its way south for Spring Break for a spate of matches in Florida, including an historic date with the Miami Hurricanes on Tuesday.
PC (13-2) will play Miami and St. Thomas in Miami on Tuesday before facing Stetson and Coe College in Deland and Orlando on Friday.
Tuesday’s match against Miami marks the newest chapter in PC’s rich tennis history. Fifty-seven years ago, the Blue Hose toppled the Hurricanes to derail a 72-match winning streak—a five-year unbeaten stretch for the nation’s top team. The 5-4 win highlighted a series of high-profile results for the Blue Hose in 1952, including victories over Yale, Princeton, Duke, Michigan State and Cornell en route to their 17th straight South Carolina tennis championship.
The Hurricanes hung a sign that read “84” over their courts to mark their goal of an intercollegiate record 84 straight wins. The Blue Hose stopped that streak 12 victories shy of the mark and PC coach Jim Leighton brought the sign back to hang in Clinton.
On Tuesday, PC will renew the rivalry with a match at 10 a.m. in Miami. The 13-2 Blue Hose, nationally ranked at No. 75 for the first time in their Division I history, will look to top the Hurricanes once again.
PC has won 11 of its last 12 matches and boasts a 2-0 record in Big South Conference play. Grayson Mills (Lilburn, Ga.) leads the team with a 12-2 singles record—all at the top flight, and entering the week on an eight match winning streak—and freshmen Diego Manzanas (Madrid, Spain) and Ben Kelley (Weaverville, N.C.) have also reached the 10-win plateau through the first 15 matches.
Kelley and sophomore Ryan Miller (Norcross, Ga.) each both a team-leading 11 doubles wins apiece on the year. The Blue Hose have posted a .725 winning percentage in both singles matches and doubles matches, with a 29-11 record each. The doubles pairing of Manzanas and Mills has tallied a spotless 5-0 record together at the third flight.
Miami (4-3) battled UNF last Saturday and will host Xavier after battling the Blue Hose. Diego Soto and Henrique Tsukamoto enter as the singles record leaders on the team, at 6-1. Omar Aly and William Albanese also have singles records of 6-2 and the duo of Gabriel Flores and Diego Soto hold the best doubles record of 4-3.
Following Miami, PC will play St. Thomas (2-4) after the Bobcats face Saint Vincent College earlier in the day. Friday matches against Stetson (2-3) and Coe College(8-0) await the Blue Hose next in Deland and Orlando.