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Wood Benton Signs With South Carolina

November 15, 2013 11:02 AM

COLUMBIA, SC – South Carolina head men’s tennis coach Josh Goffi announced that Wood Benton (Spartanburg, S.C./Dorman HS) has signed a National Letter of Intent to attend the University and play for the Gamecocks. Wood will have four years of eligibility beginning with the 2014-15 academic year.

“Wood has always been on top in the South but never played a ton of national tournaments, so went under the radar and is a very good pick-up for us,” Goffi said. “He had an injury that put him out for about a year and a half, and that kind of hampered his growth as a tennis player. But, he’s come back really strong and is getting stronger. He’s grown quite a bit in the last year or two, too, and has become a very good all-around player. He’s more of a counter-puncher, aggressive baseliner. He’s a great competitor, too, and that’s what really drew me in – his competitiveness on the court.”

Rated a five-star recruit by Tennis Recruiting Network, Wood is ranked third in South Carolina and top 50 nationally. He is 46-19 in junior events, posting a 6-5 record against blue chip recruits. At Dorman last season, he was a perfect 21-0 in singles and 8-0 in doubles en route to the 4A singles title. Helping his team to the 2013 state championship as well, he earned all-region and all-state honors last season.

As a junior, Wood participated in USTA Southern Junior Cup, which is a national team competition where juniors in the 12s, 14s and 16s from the Southern Section compete against teams from other sections around the country. He was also awarded the USTA South Carolina Boy Junior Player of the Year in 2010, an award given to a player who has an outstanding year which is reflected in state, sectional and national ranking.

Wood joins Harrison O’Keefe (Salem, Va./Laurel Springs School), who signed on Wednesday, in Goffi’s 2014 signing class.