University of Georgia freshman Ethan Quinn beat Michigan's Ondrej Styler, 6-7 (2), 7-6 (5), 6-2, to win the 2023 NCAA Singles National Championship, Saturday at the United States Tennis Association National Complex. The All-American is the fourth freshman to claim the crown since 1977 and the first player from Georgia to advance to the Finals since John Isner in 2007.
Quinn defeated TCU's Luc Fomba, UNC's Ryan Seggerman, Stanford's Nishesh Basavareddy, Michigan's Andrew Fenty, Virginia's Chris Rodesch and, of course, Styler, to win the title. He saved four match points in the second set to force a tiebreaker.
He would go on to take the breaker and third set against No. 8 Styler. Quinn immediately went 2–0 up to start the championship game, going up a break and saving two break points to start the day. However, he then broke Styler on a deciding run to take a 5-2 lead; the Michigan senior broke Quinn twice and held to put to take his first lead of the day, 6-5.
Styler then took the set, 7-6 (2). Both held on in the second set until another pair of double faults, this time from Styler, gave Quinn the break he needed to get back on serve, 3-3. In the game following the deciding point, Styler's slide pass went just out of reach to Quinn to earn the break.
With Styler leading 5-4, he held on to the championship point at 40-love, but Quinn dug deep and saved four match points to earn the break. The set went on the break again after holding serve. Quinn threw his first ace of the game to outrun his opponent to tie the breaker 2-2 and then hit three of his next four runs to take a 5-3 lead.
He would then take the breaker to force a third set, 7-6 (5). Momentum started swinging towards Quinn as the match entered the deciding set. He broke Styler in the first game and went on four straight points while serving to lead 2-0.
Styler would answer with a break of his own but was unable to hold serve and Quinn again took a break lead, 4-2. He closed out the game and captured the national championship with a 6-7 (2), 7-6 (5), 6-2 win. The 2023 SEC Freshman of the Year and member of the All-SEC First Team, Quinn is the first freshman in program history to reach the Finals and win the national championship.
Quinn was also part of an able group of Bulldogs to reach the final, which includes Patricio Arnold (1991), George Bezecny (1985), Boeker (2001, 2002), John Isner (2007), Wade McGuire (1992) and Pernfors ( 1984, 1985). He closed out the season by winning 17 consecutive singles matches and going 22-1 by February 19.
His win against Styler, who finished No. 8 in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association singles poll, led Quinn to 34-10 on the year and 26-7 against ranked opponents. Coach Manuel Diaz said: "It was a game with a lot of momentum changes.
At the end there, when Styler served for the game, you have to make comebacks and he gave himself a chance. Ethan played with a little more freedom, and somehow he earned one point, then another. It just felt like time slowed down a bit for him.
He was patient when it needed to be and played assertively when he needed it at the end. I'm super proud of him for showing the grit and continuing to fight the good fight. He has earned a great victory for himself and our program." Quinn said after the victory: "Ever since I started college, my goal was to win the singles championship.
Achieving that goal is special and being on that roster of guys is amazing. They've had phenomenal careers and I just hope they may my career be as good as theirs one day."
About the University of Georgia
The University of Georgia is a public university located in Athens, Georgia, United States.
Founded in 1785, it is the oldest and largest institution of major education in the state. The University of Georgia is part of the University System of Georgia. It is also a member of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.
It is classified as a Research University/Very High Activity. On January 27, 1785, the Georgia General Assembly issued a document signed by Abraham Baldwin for the University of Georgia to be the first state university. Sixteen years later, in 1801, a committee of the university's board of trustees selected a site on a hill below Cedar Shoals for the university to stand on.
On July 25, John Milledge, one of the trustees and later governor of Georgia, bought 1,000 square miles of land from Daniel Easley and donated it to the university. During the American Civil War, the university closed in October 1863 and reopened in January 1866.
In the summer of 1903, after a century of exclusively white male education, UGA opened to female education, but the girls were admitted to undergraduate courses only in 1918. In 1961, UGA was involved in part of the civil rights movement when Charlayne Hunter and Hamilton Holmes became the first two African American students to enter the University of Georgia.
The University of Georgia offers 140 graduate programs in a variety of disciplines. Featuring 13 libraries scattered across campuses, they contain 4.7 million volumes and one of the largest collections of maps in the American nation.
UGA Libraries is a member of the Association of Research Libraries. The University of Georgia is organized into 18 schools and colleges and consists of 3 main campuses: the largest one is located in Athens while the other two are in Tifton and Griffin.
The University's sports teams are called the Georgia Bulldogs. A member of the Southeastern Conference, the Bulldogs have won 37 national championships and 130 conference titles. The Georgia Redcoat Marching Band is the official marching band of the University of Georgia.
Photo Credits: University of Georgia webiste
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