Tuesday, 10 May 2016 23:38

NCAA First/Second Round Previews: UCLA & Northwestern Regionals

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UCLA Regional
Sunset Canyon Recreation Center - Los Angeles, CA

[3] UCLA Bruins (22-2) vs. [49-64] Weber State Wildcats (14-7) - Friday 1pm PT - Both schools earned their conference's automatic berth after UCLA defeated Cal in the finals of the Pac-12 Tournament while Weber State punched its first ticket since 1992 with a win over Idaho in the finals of the Big Sky Tournament. Weber State went 0-3 against teams that were ranked at some point during the season the Wildcats losing to BYU, Utah, and UC Irvine by a combined score of 18-2. 

Note: These matches will be played at the Sunset Canyon Recreation Center, which is on the campus of UCLA, instead of the Los Angeles Tennis Center due to construction of the new football and basketball training facilities.

Doubles Records: UCLA 18-6, Weber State 13-8
UTR Starting 6 Power Rating: UCLA 85, Weber State 72

FYI, the number beside the player's school is the player's Universal Tennis Rating as of May 10th. For more details about UTR check out their website. 

The UTR Power 6 is the combined UTRs of the starting 6 (rounded to a whole #).  An individual win/loss to anyone with a UTR difference of 1.0 or greater would be considered an upset.   

Projected Singles Lineups
1. #6 Mackenzie McDonald (UCLA 14.98) vs. Jakub Gewert (WSU 11.82)
2. #38 Martin Redlicki (UCLA 14.04) vs. Todd Fought (WSU 12.66)
3. #58 Gage Brymer (UCLA 14.14) vs. Stefan Cooper (WSU 12.07)
4. #101 Karue Sell (UCLA 14.46) vs. Hou En Chen (WSU 11.55)
5. Logan Staggs (UCLA 13.50) vs. Landon Barlow (WSU 12.16)
6. Joseph Di Giulio (UCLA 13.64) vs. Sanjay Goswami (WSU 11.85)
O: Austin Rapp (UCLA 13.26)

Who Is Streaking (Consecutive Wins >1)
UCLA: McDonald 11, Redlicki 10, Brymer 7, Di Giulio 5
WSU: Goswami 11, Fought 4, Barlow 3

UCLA played at Sunset three weeks ago against UC San Diego and won that easily 7-0. They won't get to 7 this time due to the clinch rule but they'll get to 4 pretty quickly. Bruins in doubles and McDonald, Sell, and Di Giulio in singles. Prediction: UCLA 4-0. 




[17-32] San Diego Toreros (23-7) vs. [33-48] Vanderbilt Commodores (17-13) - Friday 10am PT San Diego earned the West Coast Conference's automatic bid after defeating Pepperdine in the finals of the conference tournament while Vanderbilt was awarded an at-large bid after falling to Florida in the quarterfinals of the SEC Tournament. San Diego enters this match riding a 13-match winning streak with 10 of those being shutouts. Vanderbilt played its way off the bubble by winning four of its last five which included wins over Mississippi State, LSU, and Alabama. 

San Diego won the regular season meeting 4-0 all the way back during the Kick-Off Weekend in January though the only individual rematches will come at No. 1 and No. 2 singles. 

Regular Season Meeting 

#19 San Diego 4, #26 Vanderbilt 0 
Jan 23, 2016 at Durham, N.C (Sheffield Indoor Tennis Center)
Singles competition 
1. #35 Uros Petronijevic (USD) vs. #64 Daniel Valent (VANDY) 6-0, 2-6, 3-1, unf 
2. #34 Jordan Angus (USD) def. Rhys Johnson (VANDY) 6-1, 7-6 (7-3) 
3. Filip Vittek (USD) def. Baker Newman (VANDY) 6-3, 6-4 
4. #82 Romain Kalaydjian (USD) vs. Cameron Klinger (VANDY) 6-7 (5-7), 5-3, unf 
5. #58 Jaan Kononov (USD) vs. Kris Yee (VANDY) 1-6, 3-4, unf 
6. Joshua Page (USD) def. Ryan Smith (VANDY) 6-2, 7-5 
Doubles competition 
1. Jordan Angus/Filip Vittek (USD) def. Rhys Johnson/Cameron Klinger (VANDY) 6-4 
2. Joshua Page/Uros Petronijevic (USD) def. Ryan Smith/Pen Binet (VANDY) 6-1 
3. Jaan Kononov/Romain Kalaydjian (USD) vs. Baker Newman/Daniel Valent (VANDY) 3-4, unf 
Match Notes 
Vanderbilt 3-0; National ranking #26 
San Diego 2-0; National ranking #19 
Order of finish: Doubles (2,1); Singles (3,2,6)


Doubles Records: San Diego 19-8, Vanderbilt 16-13
UTR Starting 6 Power Rating: San Diego 82, Vanderbilt 81

Projected Singles Lineups
1. #65 Uros Petronijevic (USD 14.18) vs. #36 Daniel Valent (VU 14.15)
2. #71 Jordan Angus (USD 13.91) vs. Rhys Johnson (VU 13.34)
3. Filip Vittek (USD 13.67) vs. 
#84 Cameron Klinger (VU 13.74) 
4. Jaan Kononov (USD 13.37) vs. Baker Newman (VU 13.57)
5. Romain Kalaydjian (USD 13.46) vs. Kris Yee (VU 12.99)
6. Alex Araouzos (USD 12.78) vs. Alex Ross (VU 12.84)
O: Josh Page (USD 12.91); Pen Binet (VU 12.77)

Who Is Streaking (Consecutive Wins >1)
USD: Araouzos 9, Kalaydjian 8, Angus 8, Vittek 6, Kononov 5, Page 4, Petronijevic 3
VU: Newman 4, Ross 2

San Diego entered last year's NCAA Tournament riding a 15-match winning streak and got stunned in the first round by a San Diego State team that it just beaten one month earlier.  I think this senior-laden team led by Uros Petronijevic will get it done on Friday with Petronijevic, Angus, Kononov, and Kalaydjian winning in singles while Vandy takes the doubles point and gets a win from Klinger at 3. Prediction: San Diego 4-2
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Regional Final - [17-32] San Diego at [3] UCLA - Saturday 1pm PT 

Previous Meeting

#9 UCLA 7, #16 San Diego 0 
Feb 05, 2016 at Los Angeles, CA (Los Angeles Tennis Center) 
Doubles competition 
1. McDonald/Redlicki (UCLA) def. #7 Angus/Vittek (USD) 6-4 
2. Di Giulio/Sell (UCLA) def. Page/Petronijevic (USD) 6-3 
3. Brymer/Rapp (UCLA) vs. Kalaydjian/Kononov (USD) 4-5, unfinished 
Singles competition 
1. Mackenzie McDonald (UCLA 15.00) def. #35 Uros Petronijevic (USD 14.04) 4-6, 6-1, 6-1 
2. #48 Martin Redlicki (UCLA 13.84) def. #34 Jordan Angus (USD 13.96) 6-1, 6-3 
3. Gage Brymer (UCLA 14.08) def. Filip Vittek (USD 13.58) 6-0, 4-6, 6-2 
4. Karue Sell (UCLA 14.33) def. #82 Romain Kalaydjian (USD 13.23) 6-1, 6-2 
5. #98 Logan Staggs (UCLA 13.57) def. Joshua Page (USD 12.96) 4-6, 6-4, 6-1 
6. Joseph Di Giulio (UCLA 13.56) def. Jaan Kononov (USD 13.64) 6-3, 6-3 
Match Notes 
San Diego 4-0; National ranking #16 
UCLA 4-0; National ranking #9 
Order of finish: Doubles (2,1); Singles (4,2,6,1,3,5)


Doubles Records: UCLA 18-6, San Diego 19-8
UTR Starting 6 Power Rating: UCLA 85, San Diego 82

Projected Singles Lineups
1. #6 Mackenzie McDonald (UCLA 14.98) vs. #65 Uros Petronijevic (USD 14.18)
2. #38 Martin Redlicki (UCLA 14.04) vs. #71 Jordan Angus (USD 13.91)
3. #58 Gage Brymer (UCLA 14.14) vs. Filip Vittek (USD 13.67)
4. #101 Karue Sell (UCLA 14.46) vs. Jaan Kononov (USD 13.37)
5. Logan Staggs (UCLA 13.50) vs. Romain Kalaydjian (USD 13.46)
6. Joseph Di Giulio (UCLA 13.64) vs. Alex Araouzos (USD 12.78)
O: Austin Rapp (UCLA 13.26); Josh Page (USD 12.91)

San Diego has had teams that were good enough to make the Round of 16 but geography has been its worst enemy. Due to its Southern California location it has been sent to the UCLA or USC regionals six years in a row. USC eliminated them in 2011 and 2013, UCLA took them out in 2012 and 2014, and San Diego State stunned them last year in the opening round of the USC regional. It seems the committee has been alternating USD's trips to USC and UCLA and its too bad that it was UCLA's turn because I think the Toreros would have had a fighting chance against USC. 

UCLA won the regular season meeting 7-0 and the Bruins will be putting out the exact same lineup in this one while San Diego has switched up its 4, 5, and 6. I think this matchup will have similar scorelines versus the regular season meeting with San Diego likely to win a few sets but UCLA will win all the completed matches. Bruins will take the doubles point and gets wins from Redlicki, Sell, and Di Giulio. Prediction: UCLA 4-0

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Northwestern Regional
Vandy Christie Tennis Center - Evanston, IL

[14] Northwestern Wildcats (25-4) vs. [49-64] Valparaiso Crusaders (22-5) - Saturday 1pm CT - Northwestern earned an at-large bid after falling to Illinois in the semifinals of the Big Ten Tournament while Valpo punched its first-ever ticket after shutting out Green Bay in the finals of the Horizon League Tournament. Valpo went 1-5 against teams that were ranked at some point during the season with the win coming over Western Michigan. Northwestern set a school record for wins (25) while also going 14-0 at home. Valpo's 22 wins are a new school record so one team will add to its record total while the others season will come to a close. Valpo will be making the short 70-mile drive from it's Northern Indiana campus so it should have some good fan support. 

Doubles Records: Northwestern 24-5, Valparaiso 21-6
UTR Starting 6 Power Rating: Northwestern 83, Valparaiso 76

FYI, the number beside the player's school is the player's Universal Tennis Rating as of May 10th. For more details about UTR check out their website. 

The UTR Power 6 is the combined UTRs of the starting 6 (rounded to a whole #).  An individual win/loss to anyone with a UTR difference of 1.0 or greater would be considered an upset.   

Projected Singles Lineups
1. #20 Konrad Zieba (NU 14.56) vs. Jeffrey Schorsch (VALPO 13.77)
2. #40 Sam Shropshire (NU 14.17) vs. Chad Kissell (VALPO 12.65)
3. #57 Strong Kirchheimer (NU 14.41) vs. Dave Bacalla (VALPO 12.03)
4. Fedor Baev (NU 13.20) vs. Charlie Emhardt (VALPO 12.53)
5. Ben Vandixhorn (NU 13.08) vs. Garrett Gardner (VALPO 11.79)
6. Alp Horoz (NU 13.01) vs. Kyle Dunn (VALPO 12.43)
O: Mihir Kumar (NU 13.40)

Who Is Streaking (Consecutive Wins)
NU: Kirchheimer 12, Vandixhorn 6
VU: Schorsch 10, Kissell 10, Emhardt 8, Dunn 8, Bacalla 3, Gardner 2

Valpo has some talent throughout its lineup but Northwestern hasn't come this far to go down in the first round. I like the Cats in doubles and Shropshire, Kirchheimer, and Vandixhorn in singles. Prediction: Northwestern 4-0. 



[17-32] Stanford Cardinal (13-10) vs. [33-48] Notre Dame Fighting Irish (15-13) - Saturday 10am CT - Both teams got in as an at-large with Stanford falling to UCLA in the semifinals of the Pac-12 Tournament while Notre Dame lost a 4-3 nail-biter to Wake Forest in the ACC quarters. Notre Dame will have a reasonably short 110-mile drive to Evanston while Stanford will be making the 2000-mile flight across the country for a match that will start at 8am pacific time. Stanford has a pair of starters that should have some nice support with Tom Fawcett growing up five miles away in Winnetka while Sameer Kumar is from Indianapolis. Kumar's older brother, Mihir, starts in doubles for Northwestern so the family will get to see both play.

Stanford only has two singles starters (Fawcett/Romanowicz) with a dual-match record of more than 1 match above .500. Notre Dame isn't much better with Monaghan, Hagar, and Sabacinski each 3 matches over .500 while Broadus is 2 over. 

Doubles Records: Stanford 17-5, Notre Dame 15-12
UTR Starting 6 Power RatingStanford 83, Notre Dame 81

Projected Singles Lineups
1. #15 Tom Fawcett (ST 14.63) vs. #35 Quentin Monaghan (ND 14.08)
2. Michael Genender (ST 13.54) vs. #105 Josh Hagar (ND 13.81)
3. #87 David Wilczynski (ST 13.73) vs. Eddy Covalschi (ND 13.27)
4. Nolan Paige (ST 13.38) vs. Alex Lawson (ND 13.37)
5. Sameer Kumar (ST 13.59) vs. Kenneth Sabacinski (ND 12.79)
6. Maciek Romanowicz (ST 13.63) vs. Grayson Broadus (ND 13.06)

Who Is Streaking (Consecutive Wins >1)
ST: Romanowicz 4
ND: Hagar 3, Covalschi 2

This was one of the tougher matches to pick a winner because while Stanford looks better on paper Notre Dame really finished strong down the stretch.

Stanford has been pretty tough in doubles while Notre Dame was struggling until it won the doubles point in four of its final five matches. I'm going to take Stanford in doubles but if Notre Dame finds a way to take the point I think they'll win the match. In singles I like Josh Hagar, Alex Lawson, and Kenny Sabacinski for the Irish while I'll take Tom Fawcett, David Wilczynski, and Maciek Romanowicz for the Cardinal. After going 0-4 in 4-3 matches I'm going to pick Stanford to finally win one. Prediction: Stanford 4-3
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Regional Final - [17-32] Stanford at [14] Northwestern - Sunday 1pm CT -

Doubles Records: Northwestern 24-5, Stanford 17-5
UTR Starting 6 Power Rating: Northwestern 83, Stanford 83

Projected Singles Lineups
1. #20 Konrad Zieba (NU 14.56) vs. #15 Tom Fawcett (ST 14.63)
2. #40 Sam Shropshire (NU 14.17) vs. Michael Genender (ST 13.54)
3. #57 Strong Kirchheimer (NU 14.41) vs. #87 David Wilczynski (ST 13.73)
4. Fedor Baev (NU 13.20) vs. Nolan Paige (ST 13.38)
5. Ben Vandixhorn (NU 13.08) vs. Sameer Kumar (ST 13.59)
6. Alp Horoz (NU 13.01) vs. Maciek Romanowicz (ST 13.63)
O: Mihir Kumar (NU 13.40)

The weather on Sunday won't exactly be up to Chamber of Commerce standards with temps expected to be in the low 50s accompanied by 15 mile per hour winds. I'm going to take Stanford in doubles and Sameer Kumar in singles but I like Konrad Zieba, Sam Shropshire, Strong Kirchheimer, and Fedor Baev for Northwestern. Prediction: Northwestern 4-2

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