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The Saturday schedule didn’t exactly have a ton of sizzle but there were still some good matches and a few surprises as well. The only men’s matchup between top 25 teams took place in Berkeley as No. 11 Cal hosted No. 25 Illinois. Cal picked up a quick 6-2 win at No. 1 doubles and then Andre Goransson and Billy Griffith clinched the point after coming back from a break down to win 6-4. Each team took three first sets in singles and four of the them would finish in straight sets. Cal junior JT Nishimura was dominant in his 6-2, 6-0 win at No. 6 while Illinois picked up a 6-4, 6-4 win from junior Aleks Vukic at No. 1 and a 7-6, 6-1 win from freshman Zeke Clark at No. 5. Cal junior Billy Griffith put the Bears ahead 3-2 by coming back from a set down to defeat Illinois freshman Aleks Kovacevic 3-6, 6-2, 6-3 at No. 3. It looked like Illinois was going to get a split at No. 4 when senior Julian Childers led 5-3 in the second set but Cal senior Filip Bergevi fought off six set points and came back to clinch the match with a 7-5, 7-6 win. 

Cal senior Andre Goransson served for the match twice against Illinois junior Aron Hiltzik but Hiltzik broke both times to force a third set and he’d ultimately pull it out 7-5 in the third to make the final score 4-3.



#11 California 4, #25 Illinois 3
March 25, 2017, in Berkeley, Calif. Hellman Tennis Complex
Doubles competition
1. No. 4 Filip Bergevi/Florian Lakat (Cal) def. Aleks Vukic/Aron Hiltzik (Illinois), 6-2
2. No. 65 Andre Goransson/Billy Griffith (Cal) def. Alex Jesse/Aleks Kovacevic (Illinois), 6-4
3. Gui Gomes/Zeke Clark (Illinois) vs. Bjorn Hoffmann/J.T. Nishimura (Cal), 6-5 Unfinished
Singles competition
1. No. 20 Aleks Vukic (Illinois) def. No. 13 Florian Lakat (Cal), 6-4, 6-4
2. No. 30 Aron Hiltzik (Illinois) def. No. 48 Andre Goransson (Cal), 3-6, 7-6(3), 7-5
3. No. 71 Billy Griffith (Cal) def. Aleks Kovacevic (Illinois), 3-6, 6-2, 6-3
4. No. 108 Filip Bergevi (Cal) def. Julian Childers (Illinois), 7-5, 7-6(6)
5. Zeke Clark (Illinois) def. Bjorn Hoffmann (Cal), 7-6(3), 6-1
6. J.T. Nishimura (Cal) def. Vuk Budic (Illinois), 6-2, 6-0
Match Notes
California 13-5; National ranking #11
Illinois 9-7; National ranking #25
Order of Finish: Singles (6,5,1,3,4^,2); Doubles (1,2)

Post-Match Quotes from Cal’s recap
“We’ve been working on staying aggressive when we have a lead, and I think we did a good job of that today,” Cal head coach Peter Wright said. “Illinois has a reputation of not giving up, so we knew we had to continue to look for opportunities whenever they appeared.”

“We’re starting to play the level of tennis we need to play as we head into the Pac-12 season next week,” Wright added. “We have plenty of areas we can improve on, but I think today’s match was step in the right direction.”

Post-Match Quotes from head coach Brad Dancer via Illinois’s recap
“Cal has a great team and great coaches. They were able to get the doubles point after we were up late breaks in two matches. Then in singles, J.T. (Nishimura) played a great match and started to put some pressure on us. We responded well and were in great position. Julian (Childers) had six set points to take the second and make the team match come down to him. So the guys put themselves in a position to win, but left too many things to chance and Cal capitalized.”


Screen Shot 2017 03 25 at 11.12.56 PM

 Photo by Bridgette Hogan (LSU)


Both the LSU women and men hosted Texas A&M on Saturday afternoon with both matches played indoors due to weather. The women got off to slow start after dropping the doubles point but they rallied in singles and picked up straight set wins from Jade Lewis, Joana Valle Costa, Ryann Foster, and Jessica Golovin with Valle Costa clinching the win at No. 2. Texas A&M’s Tina Bokhua picked up a straight set win at No. 6 while the match at No. 5 went unfinished with LSU’s Becca Weissmann leading 4-2 in the third. 

LSU is now off to its best start in conference play in 20 years with the Tigers now 5-2 in the SEC.



#16 LSU 4, #20 Texas A&M 2
Mar 25, 2017 at Baton Rouge, LA (LSU Tennis Complex)
Singles competition
1. #30 Jade Lewis (LSU) def. #39 Rachel Pierson (A&M) 7-5, 6-4
2. #86 Joana Valle Costa (LSU) def. #91 Rutuja Bhosale (A&M) 7-6(1), 7-5
3. #105 Ryann Foster (LSU) def. Saska Gavrilovska (A&M) 6-4, 6-2
4. Jessica Golovin (LSU) def. Domenica Gonzalez (A&M) 6-4, 6-4
5. Macarena Olivares (A&M) vs. Becca Weissmann (LSU) 7-5, 1-6, 2-4, unfinished
6. Tina Bokhua (A&M) def. Skylar Holloway (LSU) 6-4, 6-3
Doubles competition
1. #12 Rachel Pierson/Rutuja Bhosale (A&M) def. #20 Joana Valle Costa/Ryann Foster (LSU) 6-2
2. Domenica Gonzalez/Eva Paalma (A&M) def. Jade Lewis/Becca Weissmann (LSU) 6-3
3. Macarena Olivares/Stefania Hristov vs. Jessica Golovin/Skylar Holloway (LSU) 5-4, unfinished
Match Notes:
Texas A&M 10-9; National ranking #20
LSU 12-4; National ranking #16
Order of finish: Doubles (1,2); Singles (3,1,4,6,2)

Post-Match Quotes from LSU’s recap
“Texas A&M is a really strong team,” co-head coach Julia Sell said. “On paper, they’re one of the strongest teams in the conference and their players are talented at every single spot. Every win in the SEC is huge, and taking it one match at a time is really going to help us moving forward.”

“We struggled in doubles today,” Sell said. “We came out flat and it was just an off day where we were missing some of our execution, but they came out and did a really good job of being disciplined in singles.”

“For Joana to come out and take care of that in two sets, it just shows how confidently she’s playing right now,” Sell said.


While the Texas A&M women came up short the men did not as they ran their winning streak to 13 with a 5-2 win over LSU. Texas A&M dropped the doubles point for the 11th time in 17 matches, 7th time during the 13-match winning streak, but they came back strong in singles again and picked up straight set wins at every spot except No. 2. The Aggies win streak will face a stiff test on Monday when they go to Fort Worth to face TCU. 



#8 Texas A&M 5, #66 LSU 2
Mar 25, 2017 at Baton Rouge, LA (LSU Tennis Complex)
Singles competition
1. #12 Arthur Rinderknech (TAMU) def. #44 Jordan Daigle (LSU) 7-5, 5-1 (ret.)
2. #56 Justin Butsch (LSU) def. #116 AJ Catanzariti (TAMU) 6-4, 2-6, 1-0[7]
3. #119 Jordi Arconada (TAMU) def. Gabor Csonka (LSU) 6-3, 6-2
4. Aleksandre Bakshi (TAMU) def. Nikola Samardzic (LSU) 6-2, 6-2
5. Valentin Vacherot (TAMU) def. Agie Moreno (LSU) 6-2, 6-2
6. Hady Habib (TAMU) def. Julian Saborio (LSU) 6-3, 6-3
Doubles competition
1. Jordan Daigle/Justin Butsch (LSU) def. AJ Catanzariti/Arthur Rinderknech (TAMU) 6-4
2. Aleksandre Bakshi/Valentin Vacherot (TAMU) vs. Gabor Csonka/Julian Saborio (LSU) 5-4
3. Agie Moreno/Eric Samuelsson (LSU) def. Hady Habib/Jordi Arconada (TAMU) 6-4
Match Notes:
LSU 5-13, 1-6
Texas A&M 14-3, 7-0; National ranking #8
Order of finish: Doubles (1,3); Singles (4,6,5,3,1,2)

Post Match Quotes from Texas A&M head coach Steve Denton via A&M’s recap

On the match…”LSU played great doubles against us, but we had our chances and could not take advantage of them. I know they are really good on the top doubles court and we were even at three-all and four-all, but we just could not get over the hump on any of the doubles courts. Our guys responded very well in singles play, as they have done several times this season. We had a different challenge in front of us today, playing indoors after not playing inside for a while. The guys were able to respond well and get out to good leads in the singles matches and carried five of six first sets. Doing the same thing we have been doing, getting on top of matches early and winning the three-all points and putting pressure on our opponents.”

On who impressed him against LSU…”I was not on his court, but I noticed the Alex [Bakshi] played one of his best matches against a tough player. He is not short of confidence of late, having clinched the win over Ohio State last Sunday. He is beginning to play better and all of the guys in the singles lineup played well. AJ [Catanzariti] played a good match, but ran up against a hot player and any time you are in a 10-point tiebreaker it turns into almost a coin flip.



Georgia ran its conference record to 7-0 (same as Texas A&M) with a 7-0 rout over Alabama in front of a huge crowd of 1626. Georgia eked out the doubles point after winning the decider at No. 3 in a tiebreak but the Bulldogs really dominated in singles by winning 12 of 13 sets. 

#14 Georgia 7, #60 Alabama 0
March 25, 2017 at Athens, Ga. (Dan Magill Tennis Complex)
Singles Results
1. Nathan Ponwith (UGA) def. #35 Mazen Osama (UA) 6-4, 6-3
2. #32 Wayne Montgomery (UGA) def. #105 Thibault Cancel (UA) 3-6, 6-2, 1-0 (10-8)
3. #65 Emil Reinberg (UGA) def. Edison Ortiz (UA) 6-3, 6-0
4. Jan Zielinski (UGA) def. Alexey Nesterov (UA) 6-4, 6-2
5. Walker Duncan (UGA) def. Spencer Richey (UA) 6-1, 6-4
6. Robert Loeb (UGA) def. Zhe Zhou (UA) 6-1, 6-2
Doubles Results
1. #8 Jan Zielinski/Robert Loeb (UGA) def. #40 Mazen Osama/Spencer Richey (UA) 6-4
2. Thibault Cancel/Alexey Nesterov (UA) def. #48 Nathan Ponwith/Emil Reinberg (UGA) 6-4
3. Wayne Montgomery/Walker Duncan (UGA) def. Edison Ortiz/Zhe Zhou (UA) 7-6 (10-8)
Match Notes:
Alabama 8-12
Georgia 11-6; National ranking #14
Order of finish: Doubles (1,2,3); Singles (6,3,4,5,1,2)
Time – 2:21
Attendance -1626

Post-Match Quotes from Georgia’s recap
“Our team is really starting to come along right now,” head coach Manuel Diaz said. “We played better in doubles tonight and then came out and looked really strong on the singles courts. There are still some areas for improvement but we are continuing to make progress as we hit the stretch run of conference play.”
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Florida Atlantic University, based in Boca Raton, joined Conference USA four years ago but they didn’t pick up their first conference win until yesterday when they knocked off Charlotte 6-1. On Saturday they picked up conference win No. 2 when they defeated CUSA’s second highest ranked team, #39 Old Dominion, in their own backyard. FAU won the doubles point when its No. 2 team of Felipe Frias and Arthur Stefani won the decider in a tiebreak 7-3. 
FAU kept things rolling in singles when it took four first sets with three of those coming in a tiebreak. Remi Chancerel and Arthur Stefani won in straight sets at No. 2 and No. 5 to put the Owls ahead 3-0 before ODU cut it to 3-2 with straight set wins from Adam Moundir and Javier Jover Maestre at No. 1 and No. 3. FAU’s Anthony Schohn clinched the match with a 7-6, 6-2 win at No. 3 while the match at No. 6 went unfinished with FAU’s Ignacio Jimenez leading. 
FAU plays Middle Tennessee State tomorrow morning to close out the CUSA Pod weekend in Norfolk. 

#77 Florida Atlantic 4, #39 Old Dominion 2
Mar 25, 2017 at Norfolk, Va. (Folkes-Stevens Tennis Center)
Singles competition
1. #36 Adam Moundir (ODU) def. #124 Andrei M-Kougoucheff (FAUM) 6-2, 7-5
2. Remi Chancerel (FAUM) def. Michael Weindl (ODU) 6-2, 6-2
3. Anthony Schohn (FAUM) def. Jacob Nicolussi (ODU) 7-6, 6-2
4. Javier Jover Maestre (ODU) def. Felipe Frias (FAUM) 6-0, 6-3
5. Arthur Stefani (FAUM) def. Aziz Kijametovic (ODU) 7-6, 6-0
6. Ignacio Jimenez (FAUM) vs. Jose Nunez Navarro (ODU) 7-6, 2-1, unfinished
Doubles competition
1. Andrei M-Kougoucheff/Remi Chancerel (FAUM) def. Aziz Kijametovic/Jose Nunez Navarro (ODU) 6-4
2. Felipe Frias/Arthur Stefani (FAUM) def. Michael Weindl/Jacob Nicolussi (ODU) 7-6 (7-3)
3. Adam Moundir/Javier Jover Maestre (ODU) def. Anthony Schohn/Alexander Gitin (FAUM) 6-3
Match Notes
Florida Atlantic 15-4
Old Dominion 13-4; National ranking #39
Order of finish: Doubles (3,1,2); Singles (2,5,4,1,3)

Post-Match Quotes from FAU’s recap
“This was 100% a team win,” FAU Head Coach Ricardo Gonzalez said. “We compete with so much love and passion for each other that regardless of the results, we all feel like we have won the day. Our team did a very good job staying composed throughout the whole match and I think that was the main difference. I am also extremely proud of the way we stepped up in doubles. We have really been emphasizing doubles a lot during practice and we definitely showed some improvement out there. Tomorrow is another day and another challenge. We will celebrate a good victory today but make sure we prepare the same way for tomorrow.”

Post-Match Quote from ODU’s recap
“All the credit goes to FAU,” said ODU head coach Dominik Mueller. “They outcompeted us today in singles and deserved to win. I think we improved in doubles and should have won the point. Being up a break on all three courts should be enough, but we weren’t able to finish. We have to bounce back tomorrow against a good Charlotte team.”


#9 North Carolina 5, Tulsa 2
March 25, 2017 at Chapel Hill, NC (Cone-Kenfied Tennis Center)
Doubles Results
1. #16 Blumberg/Kelly (UNC) def. #54 Kilani/Ram-Harel (Tulsa) 6-4
2. Murray/Soendergaard (UNC) def. Bechard/O. Kellerman (Tulsa) 6-4
3. Kodali/Schneider (UNC) vs. Hing/Santos (Tulsa) 5-5, unfinished
Singles results
1. #19 Ronnie Schneider (UNC) def. #25 Or Ram-Harel (Tulsa) 6-2, 6-1
2. #31 William Blumberg (UNC) def. Majed Kilani (Tulsa) 7-5, 6-4
3. Jarod Hing (Tulsa) def. Simon Soendergaard (UNC) 6-4, 5-7, 1-0 (4)
4. Dominic Bechard (Tulsa) def. #54 Robert Kelly (UNC) 6-2, 7-5
5. Jack Murray (UNC) def. Daniel Santos (Tulsa) 6-3, 6-0
6. Blaine Boyden (UNC) def. Mitchell Pritchard (Tulsa) 6-4, 6-1
Match Notes
North Carolina 16-2; National ranking #9
Tulsa 10-12; National ranking #52
Order of finish: Doubles (2,1); Singles (1,5,4,6,2,3)

Post-Match Quotes from UNC’s recap
“Tulsa’s got a good program,” UNC head coach Sam Paul said. “They’ve got a good team, and they’ve played a tough schedule. I think it was a really good effort on our part.”

“I’ve been working really hard in the off days that we’ve had,” Schneider said. “I think today was good for myself and for the other guys on the team as well.”

“We learned a lot today,” said Paul. “This match will help us as we begin for the end run of ACC play.”


Other Notable Men’s Results

  • #18 Cornell def. #51 Drake 4-3 – Big Red trailed 2-0 but they pulled it out after Bernardo Casares Rosa won the decider 6-3, 3-6, 6-3 at No. 6
  • #37 Rice defeated Denver 4-2 and UNLV 4-1 on Day 1 of the Rice Invitational
  • Denver and UNLV both defeated Texas A&M Corpus Christi 4-0 in the other matches at the Rice Invitational
  • #40 Washington def. Fresno State 6-1 – match played in Hawaii
  • #42 Utah State def. San Diego State 4-1
  • #53 Arkansas def. #44 Auburn 4-1
  • Pepperdine def. Pacific 4-0
  • Portland def. Santa Clara 4-2 – Pilots are 12-1 
  • St. Mary’s def. Loyola Marymount 4-3 – SMC’s Manuel Lamelas won the decider 6-2 in the third at No. 5
  • UT Arlington def. Wichita State 4-3 – UTA’s Daniel Armengol won the decider 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 at No. 4