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Sunday, May 29, 2022
<p>Freshman Duarte Vale teamed with junior McClain Kessler for Florida's only win in doubles play. </p>

Freshman Duarte Vale teamed with junior McClain Kessler for Florida's only win in doubles play. 

After freshman Duarte Vale and junior McClain Kessler won their doubles match Sunday, they looked across the courts to the other doubles team still in play.

Junior Alfredo Perez and freshman Oliver Crawford — who seemed unbeatable in the first two rounds of the tournament — hung their heads and appeared defeated as the duo squandered an early 3-1 lead to lose 6-3, resulting in Florida losing the doubles point for the fourth consecutive match.

This result would symbolize a disappointing day as No. 10 Illinois swept No. 11 Florida 4-0 in the third and final round of the consolation bracket at the ITA National Team Indoor Championships in Seattle.

Vale and Kessler earned their first doubles victory of the tournament with a 6-3 win over the 40th-ranked duo of Aleks Vukic and Aron Hiltzik, but the positives ended there.

Freshman Andy Andrade had an unsatisfactory doubles debut on court No. 3 as he and sophomore Johannes Ingildsen were quickly defeated 6-1 in their doubles match.

Florida (5-4) dug themselves into an even deeper hole against the Fighting Illini (6-3) as it fell behind early in singles on courts 1, 5 and 6.

All three courts were completed in straight sets as No. 9 Perez was upset 6-2, 6-1 by No. 46 Vukic.

Andrade continued his substandard day with a 6-0, 6-3 defeat on court No. 5, while Chase Perez-Blanco lost 6-0, 6-4 on court No. 6.

Among those who did not finish were Ingildsen, Crawford and Vale.

Vale – who was one of only two players to win a set in singles play – was in the midst of a neck-and-neck second set with Illinois sophomore Noe Khlif at the match’s close.

Florida will have time to catch its breath before heading into SEC play March 2 against No. 4 Georgia. First serves are scheduled for 6 p.m at the Ring Tennis Complex in Gainesville.

Follow Dylan Rudolph on Twitter @dyrudolph and contact him at drudolph@alligator.org.

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Freshman Duarte Vale teamed with junior McClain Kessler for Florida's only win in doubles play. 

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