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Saturday, June 15, 2024

It didn't take Alex Lacroix long to get used to the college game.

The freshman won the singles main draw for the men's tennis team at the Florida State Invitational during the weekend.

Lacroix defeated Nate Schnugg and Jamie Hunt, both of Georgia, in straight sets in Sunday's semifinals and finals, respectively, to claim the title. Both players were nationally ranked in the top 64.

Lacroix also came through a pair of three-set matches in the earlier rounds to stay alive in the tournament.

"Obviously that's a good effort for a freshman," UF coach Andy Jackson said.

Senior Greg Ouellette was also in action in Columbus, Ohio, at the ITA National Indoor Intercollegiate Championships.

He advanced to the quarterfinals before falling in straight sets Friday.

Ouellette began the tournament by defeating Oklahoma State's Ivan Puchkarov, the No. 15 player in the nation and one of last year's semifinalists.

He followed that up with a difficult three-set victory against Justin Kronauge of Ohio State.

Jackson said he was very encouraged with Ouellette's performance, overcoming the challenges of not being 100-percent healthy, beating a top-15 player and then defeating a hometown player in front of his home crowd.

"Once again he showed that he's one of the best five to 10 guys in college," Jackson said.

Jackson said that the weekend was an overall success for the team in both tournaments.

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"It was a good way for us to end the fall season, definitely on a high note," he said.

In the spring, four of the top six players will likely be freshmen, and Jackson said the young players must keep building for the upcoming season.

"What we have to do is just be continually improving with those guys, because they're very talented but they're just getting started," he said. "If more of them can follow Alex's lead, we could have a good year."

On the women's side, sophomore Megan Alexander advanced to the semifinals of the Southeastern Conference Coaches' Fall Classic before falling to Catherine Newman of Vanderbilt in three sets Saturday.

Senior Lolita Frangulyan made it to the quarterfinals, where she dropped a straight-set match to No. 22 Monica Dancevic from Georgia.

The duo lost their quarterfinal doubles match Friday, 8-2.

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