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Wednesday, April 24, 2024
<p>Florida&#x27;s Duarte Vale hammers a ball against South Florida on May 9, 2021. Vale dropped a critical singles match during the Gators&#x27; loss to Texas Friday. </p>

Florida's Duarte Vale hammers a ball against South Florida on May 9, 2021. Vale dropped a critical singles match during the Gators' loss to Texas Friday.

Seniors McCartney Kessler, Duarte Vale, Andy Andrade and junior Sam Riffice advanced to the round of 32 after opening-round wins in the individual singles tournaments Sunday.

The women’s bracket began play Sunday afternoon with senior McCartney Kessler as the only competitor representing Florida. The eighth-seeded Kessler faced Washington’s Vanessa Wong in the round of 64. Kessler defeated the All-Pac 12 First Team senior in straight sets, 6-3, 6-2, and will face Duke’s Kelly Chen Monday at 10 a.m.

Three newly crowned national champions took the court Sunday evening as men’s play kicked off. The fifth-seeded Vale defeated Virginia’s Jeffrey Von Der Schulenburg 6-1, 6-0. Vale advances to face San Diego’s August Holmgren at 2 p.m. Monday.

Andrade capitalized on momentum gained from a tiebreak victory in his first set to defeat Middle Tennessee’s Francisco Rocha 7-6, 6-0. He will face UCF’s Gabriel Decamps on Monday at 3 p.m.

The six-seeded Riffice dropped his first set to Arizona State’s Nathan Ponwith, but battled back to take the match 1-6, 7-5, 6-2. The junior will face Georgia Tech’s Andreas Martin at 2 p.m. Monday.

The individual doubles tournament begins Monday evening after singles play finishes in the afternoon. Three Gator duos are slated to compete.

On the women’s side, Kessler and junior Marlee Zein begin their tournament against Notre Dame’s Ally Bojczuk and Julia Lilien at 3 p.m.

Meanwhile, Riffice and Vale face Pepperdine’s Guy Den Oden and Adrian Oetzbach at 6:30 p.m., while senior Johannes Ingildsen and sophomore Will Grant face South Alabama’s Loic Cloes and Clement Marzol at 4.

Contact Ryan Zehnder at rzehnder@alligator.org and follow him on Twitter @ryan_zehnder.

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