Displaying items by tag: Oklahoma State

I knew it'd be hard for today's matches to follow up those from Friday but while a few of them came up short in the drama department the one that didn't was the "Big Slam" in Berkeley as Stanford pulled out a classic 4-3 win over rival Cal.  

Cal jumped out to the early lead by taking the doubles point with a 7-5 win at #3 doubles in the clinching match.  Stanford welcomed freshman David Hsu back into the singles lineup at 5 which shifted Nolan Paige to 6 while Cal made a switch at 5 and 6 and moved Greg Bayane up from 6 to 5 and dropped Wikberg from 5 to 6.  After dropping the doubles point the momentum shifted back to Stanford in singles as the Cardinal took 4 opening sets and managed to finish 3 of them off in straights as Tom Fawcett, John Morrissey, and "Rollin" Nolan Paige won at 1, 3, 6 to give Stanford a 3-1 lead.  Cal would answer back with wins from Filip Bergevi and Greg Bayane at 2 and 5 to tie it up at 3.  

All focus was centered on #4 singles where Cal freshman J.T. Nishimura had opened up a 5-2 lead in the 3rd set over Stanford junior Maciek Romanowicz and Nishimura was serving for the match. Nishimura fell behind 15-40 in his service game and after getting it back to the deciding point (40-40), which was also a match point, he would put a shot into the net to give Romanowicz the break. Romanowicz went up 40-15 on his 3-5 service game but then Nishimura hit a two-handed forehand winner to make it 40-30 and followed that up with a backhand winner past a drawn in Romanowicz to bring up the deciding point (40-40).  Nishimura chose the ad-court to receive the serve on what would be his final match point and Romanowicz landed his 1st serve out wide and as the outstretched arm of Nishimura deflected it back in play Romanowicz closed in toward the net and hit a volley into the open court for the hold.  Nishimura would now serve for the match for a 2nd time up 5-4 and he would quickly get broke at love as Romanowicz continued to play aggressively while Nishimura tightened up and had difficulty keeping the ball in play.  Romanowicz would then hold at 40-15 to go up 6-5 and would then race out to an 0-40 lead on the Nishimura serve. After a Romanowicz error made it 15-40 Nishimura wouldn't be able to keep the next one in play and with that Stanford had stunned its rival 4-3.

Cal recap

#39 Stanford 4, #14 Cal 3

Feb 21, 2015 at Berkeley, CA. (Hellman Tennis Complex)

1. No. 30 Bayane/Melton (Cal) def Morrissey/Stineman (Stanford) 6-3 2. Fawcett/Romanowicz (Stanford) def. #32 Goransson/Wikberg (Cal) 6-2
3. Bergevi/Engsted (Cal) def. Paige/Wilczynski (Stanford) 7-5
1. #28 Tom Fawcett (ST 14.12) def. #42 Andre Goransson (Cal 13.70) 6-2, 6-4
2. #114 Filip Bergevi (Cal 13.66) def. David Wilczynski (ST 13.72) 2-6, 6-2, 6-1
3. John Morrissey (ST 14.07) def. Billy Griffith (Cal 13.68) 6-4, 6-1
4. Maciek Romanowicz (ST 13.28) def. J.T. Nishimura (Cal 13.86) 5-7, 7-5, 7-5
5. Greg Bayane (Cal 13.48) def. David Hsu (ST 13.98) 6-2, 6-7(7), 6-2
6. Nolan Paige (ST 13.37) def. Oskar Wikberg (Cal 13.30) 6-2, 6-3

Match Stats
Order of Finish:  Doubles (2,1,3)  Singles (6,3,1,2,5,4)

FYI, the number beside the player's school is the player's Universal Tennis Rating as of the current date so Tom Fawcett has a 14.12 UTR as of today 2/21. For more details about UTR check out their website


In Columbus, the 184 people in attendance didn't realize they were witnessing the Buckeyes historic 200th consecutive home win with most having thought they hit that number against South Florida 2 weeks ago but as I reported it was actually 199 so today was 200.  The doubles point was the only real drama in this one with Ohio State taking the deciding match at #3 in a tiebreak.  In singles the Buckeyes took 4 1st sets and finished them all in straights and would also pick up a 3 set win from Ralf Steinbach at 5. Notre Dame's lone point would come at #1 singles as Quentin Monaghan cruised past Chris Diaz. 

Ohio State recap

Notre Dame recap

#9 Ohio State 6, #17 Notre Dame 1

Singles competition
1. #29 Quentin Monaghan (ND 14.28) def. #53 Chris Diaz (OSU 13.80) 6-1, 6-3
2. #30 Mikael Torpegaard (OSU 13.95) def. #92 Josh Hagar (ND 13.74) 6-2, 6-3
3. Herkko Pollanen (OSU 13.58) def. Eddy Covalschi (ND 13.13) 4-6, 6-4, 1-0 (10-5)
4. #110 Hunter Callahan (OSU 13.90) def. Eric Schnurrenberger (ND 13.45) 6-2, 6-2
5. #68 Ralf Steinbach (OSU 13.91) def. Billy Pecor (ND 12.98) 0-6, 6-3, 7-6 (7-4)
6. Kevin Metka (OSU 13.80) def. Nicolas Montoya (ND 12.48) 6-4, 6-3

Doubles competition
1. #7 Ralf Steinbach/Kevin Metka (OSU) def. #4 Alex Lawson/Billy Pecor (ND) 6-3
2. #17 Eddy Covalschi/Josh Hagar (ND) def. Herkko Pollanen/Mikael Torpegaard (OSU) 6-3
3. #36 Chris Diaz/Hunter Callahan (OSU) def. Quentin Monaghan/Eric Schnurrenberger (ND) 7-6(5)  

Match Notes:
Notre Dame 6-2; National ranking #17
Ohio State 11-3; National ranking #9
Order of finish: Doubles (1,2,3); Singles (4,2,6,1,3,5)

Official: Marcus Lee T-2:43 A-184


In Winston Salem, Wake Forest picked up the doubles point by winning at 1 and 2 then picked up 3 hard fought straight set wins at 1, 2, and 4 with 3 of the 6 sets going to a tiebreak.  Oklahoma State won at 5 and 6 then after the match had been clinched won a 10 point tiebreak in lieu of a 3rd set at #3 singles.  

Wake recap

OK State recap

#19 Wake Forest 4, #32 Oklahoma State 3
Feb 21, 2015 at Winston-Salem, N.C. (Wake Forest Tennis Complex)

Singles competition
1. #55 Noah Rubin (WF 14.79) def. #88 Jakob Sude (OKST 13.54) 6-3, 7-6 (3)
2. #14 Romain Bogaerts (WF 14.34) def. #87 Arjun Kadhe (OKST 13.57) 7-6 (2), 7-6 (7)
3. Lucas Gerch (OKST 13.82) def. Skander Mansouri (WF 13.07) 6-7 (1-7), 7-6 (10), 1-0 (10-2)
4. #57 Jon Ho (WF 13.49) def. Lukas Finzelberg (OKST 13.82) 7-5, 6-3
5. Tristan Meraut (OKST 13.26) def. Christian Seraphim (WF 13.40) 6-3, 6-4
6. Nicolai Ferrigno (OKST 13.38) def. Keivon Tabrizi (WF 12.92) 6-3, 5-7, 6-2

Doubles competition
1. #50 Skander Mansouri/Christian Seraphim (WF) def. #10 Jakob Sude/Arjun Kadhe (OKST) 6-1
2. Romain Bogaerts/Keivon Tabrizi (WF) def. Tristan Meraut/Jurence Mendoza (OKST) 6-4
3. Nicolai Ferrigno/Lucas Gerch (OKST) def. Sam Bloom/Anthony Delcore (WF) 6-3

Match Notes
Oklahoma State 8-3, 0-0 Big 12; National ranking #32
Wake Forest 7-2, 0-0 ACC; National ranking #19
Order of finish: Doubles (1,3,2); Singles (5,4,1,6,2,3)

T-2:49 A-234


Saturday was a big day for the Ivy League as Harvard, Princeton, and Cornell all knocked off Power 5 schools. 

In Cambridge, Harvard justified its top 25 ranking by knocking off Minnesota 5-2.  Minnesota won a tight doubles point that came down to a tiebreaker at #2 but once singles got going so did the Crimson as they took 5 1st sets and ended up closing out 3 of those in straight sets while also picking up a pair of 3-set wins at 3 and 4.  

Harvard recap

Minnesota recap

#25 Harvard 5, #34 Minnesota 2


1. #91 Denis Nguyen (HV 13.99) def. #25 Leandro Toledo (MN 14.01) 6-2, 6-4
2. Ruben Weber (MN 13.14) def. #80 Sebastian Beltrame (HV 13.21) 6-3, 7-6(5)

3. Nicky Hu (HV 13.78) def. Jack Hamburg (MN 13.15) 6-1, 3-6, 7-6(8)
4. Alex Steinroeder (HV 13.37) def. Matic Spec (MN 13.60) 6-4, 2-6, 6-3
5. Kenny Tao (HV 13.11) def. Felix Corwin (MN 13.56) 7-5, 7-6(6)
6. Brian Yeung (HV 13.19) def. Mathieu Froment (MN 13.04) 6-1, 6-2


1. Nguyen/Yeung (HV) def. Froment/Hamburg (MN) 7-5
2. Corwin/Toledo (MN) def. Beltrame/Hu (HV) 7-6(7)
3. Spec/Frueh (MN) def. Steinroeder/Solomon (HV) 6-2

Order of finish: Doubles (3,1,2); Singles (1,6,2,4,5,3)


In Montgomery, Princeton advanced to the finals of the Blue Gray classic with a 4-0 rout over Clemson.  Princeton took the doubles point by winning at 1 and 3 then they took 5 1st sets with Zack McCourt, Joshua Yablon, and Luke Gamble quickly closing out their opponents at 1, 3, and 6 to complete the shutout.  This was Princeton's 2nd big win in as many days after they beat #30 Mississippi State 4-3 on Friday.  The Tigers will face #24 South Florida in Sunday's championship match at 1pm eastern.  

Princeton recap

Clemson recap

#50 Princeton 4, #35 Clemson 0

1. Zack McCourt/Thomas Colautti (PU) def. Hunter Harrington/Luke Johnson (CU) 6-4
2. Hampton Drake/Christian Harris (CU) led Alexander Day/Luke Gamble (PU) 4-3
3. Diego Vives/Joshua Yablon (PU) def. Austin Ansari/Alejandro Augusto (CU) 6-2

1. No. 117 Zack McCourt (PU 13.55) def. No. 90 Hunter Harrington (CU 13.64) 6-3, 6-4
2. Alejandro Augusto (CU 13.23) led Thomas Colautti (PU 13.02) 7-6, 1-1, DNF
3. Joshua Yablon (PU 13.36) def. Hampton Drake (CU 12.79) 6-4, 7-5
4. Alexander Day (PU 13.15) led Austin Ansari (CU 12.89) 6-3, 1-6, 5-1, DNF
5. Kial Kaiser (PU 12.29) led Daffra Sanon (CU 12.96) 6-2, 6-5, DNF
6. Luke Gamble (PU 12.84) def. Luke Johnson (CU 12.74) 6-4, 6-2
Published in Blogs
The San Diego area was a hotbed of activity on Thursday with close to a dozen college teams in town to participate in the Pacific Coast Doubles Championships.  Several of them decided to take advantage of the warm sunny weather by scheduling a dual match the day before the individual tournament started and the results were pretty close across the board.

The biggest upset came at San Diego State where the 60th ranked Aztecs upset #22 Cal 4-2.   Cal made a shift in the singles lineup and moved Greg Bayane up to 3 from his usual spot at 5/6 and with that Billy Griffith and J.T. Nishimura each played 1 spot lower than normal.  The changes didn't pay off as SDSU swept all 3 spots in addition to taking the all important doubles point.

Below is a comment from the Cal recap by Peter Wright:

"Once again, doubles turned out to be a key element in today's match, Cal head coach Peter Wright said. "We certainly generated a lot of opportunities today, but we played without our usual discipline and consistency. We're young and learning, but we definitely need to do a better job sticking to our game plan. We've been through this before, and a lot of it is growing pains. We'll be a much stronger team by the end of the year.

SDSU recap
Cal recap

#60 San Diego State 4, #22 California 2
Mar 05, 2015 at San Diego, Calif (Aztec Tennis Center)

Singles competition
1. #58 Andre Goransson (CAL) def. Freddy Gelbrich (SDSU) 6-3, 6-1
2. Thorsten Bertsch (SDSU) vs. Filip Bergevi (CAL) 6-7 (5-7), 3-5, unfinished
3. Hendrik Jebens (SDSU) def. Gregory Bayane (CAL) 7-6 (6-1), 7-6 (6-1)
4. Marko Goles-Babic (SDSU) def. Billy Griffith (CAL) 6-3, 6-3
5. Milen Ianakiev (SDSU) def. J.T. Nishimura (CAL) 4-6, 6-4, 6-3
6. Oskar Wikberg (CAL) def. Andranik Khachatryan (SDSU) 7-6 (6-3), 6-2
Doubles competition
1. Freddy Gelbrich/Hendrik Jebens (SDSU) def. #31 Gregory Bayane/Chase Melton (CAL) 6-3
2. Thorsten Bertsch/Jonas Meinzer (SDSU) def. Andre Goransson/J.T. Nishimura (CAL) 7-5
3. Marko Goles-Babic/Andranik Khachatryan (SDSU) vs. Filip Bergevi/Oskar Wikberg (CAL) 6-6 (8-8), unfinished

Match Notes:
California 9-4; National ranking #22
San Diego State 7-4, 0-1 MW; National ranking #60

Order of finish: Doubles (1,2); Singles (4,1,6,3,5)

La Jolla:  For the 2nd match in a row USC would drop both the doubles point and see Yannick Hanfmann go down at #1 singles however this time around they had the rest of the lineup come through and hold off a hard charging San Diego Toreros squad that was looking for its signature win. The 2 guys that didn't play singles against Tulsa were the ones that came through in the clutch as Nick Crystal provided the clincher at #6 singles by winning 6-4 in the 3rd and then after the clinch Eric Johnson won at #3 singles 6-2 in the 3rd.

Fortunately for USC they still have plenty of time to get refocused before the NCAAs roll around but their recent troubles have to be giving some teams, including their next opponent UCLA, some hope that a win over SC isn't just a pipe dream anymore.

USC recap
San Diego recap 

#6 Southern California (11-2) 5, #32 San Diego (8-3) 2
March 5, 2015 :: La Jolla, Calif. (La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club)

Singles Competition
1. #115 Uros Petronijevic (USD) def. #6 Yannick Hanfmann (USC) 7-6(2), 6-2
2. #20 Roberto Quiroz (USC) def. #68 Filip Vittek (USD) 7-6(6), 6-2
3. Eric Johnson (USC) def. Jordan Angus (USD) 7-6(4), 4-6, 6-2
4. #31 Jonny Wang (USC) def. Romain Kalaydjian (USD) 6-2, 6-4
5. #72 Max de Vroome (USD) def. Geoffrey Fosso (USD) 6-3, 6-3
6. #45 Nick Crystal (USC) def. Ciaran Fitzgerald (USD) 3-6, 6-2, 6-4
Doubles Competition 
1. #2 Yannick Hanfmann/Roberto Quiroz (USC) def. Jordan Angus/Filip Vittek (USD) 6-3
2. Romain Kalaydjian/Uros Petronijevic (USD) def. #30 Eric Johnson/Mac de Vroome (USC) 7-6(6)
3. Ciaran Fitzgerald/Geoffrey Fosso (USD) def. Tanner Smith/Thibault Forget (USC) 7-5

Order of finish: Doubles (1, 3, 2*) Singles (4, 5, 1, 2, 6*, 3)

*Clinched the match

La Jolla:  Oklahoma State got all it wanted and probably more than it thought it would from UNLV but still managed to hold on to a 4-2 win.  The Cowboys picked up the doubles point and a pair of quick wins from Nicolai Ferrigno and Jurence Mendoza at 5 and 6 but all the remaining matches would go the distance.  UNLV's Ace Matias and Denys Pume would win at 1 and 2 to pull the Runnin' Rebels to within 3-2 plus UNLV's #4 Alex Cozbinov had a break lead deep in the 3rd. Fortunately for Oklahoma State, its #3 Arjun Kadhe would be able to hold off Jakob Amilon 6-4 in the 3rd to clinch the match.

Ok State recap
UNLV recap

#37 Oklahoma State 4, UNLV 2
March 5, 2015 :: La Jolla, Calif. (La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club)

Doubles | Order of finish: 1, 3
1. No. 17 Sude/Kadhe (OSU) def. Matias/Pume (UNLV), 6-0
2. Lu. Gerch/Ferrigno (OSU) vs. Amilon/Alberts (UNLV), 4-3 unf.
3. Finzelberg/Mendoza (OSU) def. Gage-Brown/Cozbinov (UNLV), 6-3

Singles | Order of finish: 5, 6, 2, 1, 3
1. Ace Matias (UNLV) def. No. 92 Jakob Sude (OSU), 6-7(5), 7-5, 6-3
2. Denys Pume (UNLV) def. Lucas Gerch (OSU), 6-7(3), 6-4, 6-1
3. No. 113 Arjun Kadhe (OSU) def. Jakob Amilon (UNLV), 7-6(4), 6-7(2), 6-4
4. Lukas Finzelberg (OSU) vs. Alex Cozbinov (UNLV), 7-6(5), 6-7(4), 2-4 unf.
5. Nicolai Ferrigno (OSU) def. Ruben Alberts (UNLV), 6-2, 6-1

6. Jurence Mendoza (OSU) def. Ozzy Abraham (UNLV), 6-2, 6-3


Fayetteville, AR:  In a matchup between a pair of teams with no one ranked in singles it was Arkansas barely holding on to beat Alabama 4-3.  The Hogs took the doubles point by winning a tiebreak at 2 then jumped on the Tide by taking 5 opening sets.  Arkansas would finish both 5 and 6 in straight sets but Alabama would take the 2nd set at 1, 3, and 4 as well as see Danny Kerznerman close out Jovan Parlic in straight sets at 2. Both Becker O'Shaughnessey and Nikko Madregallejo would roll in the 3rd set to complete the comeback at 3 and 4 for Bama but with the match on the line Arkansas's #1 Giammarco Micolani would hold off Korey Lovett 6-3 in the 3rd to clinch it for Arkansas.

Note: For those that didn't notice Alabama played 6, yes 6, dual matches this past Saturday against some lighter competition in an attempt to make sure it's dual match record stays above .500 so they're eligible for the NCAAs if they are ranked high enough.  Last year Alabama was the only team that would have made the NCAA off its ranking but due to having a record below .500 they missed out.  I think the .500 rule is a good one to make sure the best teams go to the NCAAs but the NCAA needs to put a stipulation in there that only so many of these "bought" wins count towards your record - to be able to schedule this many matches at the last second because a team's record is well below .500 isn't in the spirit of the rule.  Just my 2 cents.

Arkansas recap
Alabama recap

#55 Arkansas 4, Alabama 3
March 5, 2015 at Fayetteville, Ark. (Dills Indoor Tennis Center)

Doubles Competition
1. #26 B. O'Shaughnessey/Korey Lovett (UA) def. Santiago Munoz/Branch Terrell (ARK) 6-3
2. Jovan Parlic/Giammarco Micolani (ARK) def. Sean Donohue/Stuart Kenyon (UA) 7-6 (7-4)
3. Johan den Toom/William Albanese (ARK) def. Danny Kerznerman/Nikko Madregallejo (UA) 6-3

Singles Competition
1. Giammarco Micolani (ARK) def. Korey Lovett (UA) 6-3, 3-6, 6-3
2. Danny Kerznerman (UA) def. Jovan Parlic (ARK) 6-4, 6-3
3. B. O'Shaughnessey (UA) def. Johan den Toom (ARK) 3-6, 6-3, 6-1
4. Nikko Madregallejo (UA) def. William Albanese (ARK) 4-6, 6-2, 6-0
5. Santiago Munoz (ARK) def. Stuart Kenyon (UA) 6-4, 6-3
6. David Herrerias (ARK) def. Sean Donohue (UA) 6-2, 6-2

Match Notes:
Alabama 8-9
Arkansas 11-5; National ranking #55
The top 25 showdown between South Florida and Minnesota may have finished 4-3 but it wasn't that close as South Florida cruised to the doubles point and then picked up 4 opening sets and ended up sweeping the top 3 courts.  Roberto Cid provided the clincher at #1 singles winning the 3rd set 6-1 then after the clinch the 2 remaining matches played 10 point supertiebreaks in lieu of a 3rd set.

USF recap

"[Minnesota] has a very good team in doubles and we have a very strong team in doubles, so we knew that would be a huge point, said head coach Matt Hill. "The guys played really well today, especially at No. 1 and No. 3, so that gave us a lot of confidence moving into the singles.

Minnesota recap

FYI, the number beside the player's school is the player's Universal Tennis Rating as of March 14th.  For more details about UTR check out their website. 

#21 South Florida 4, #25 Minnesota 3
Mar 18, 2015 at Tampa, Fla. (USF Varsity Tennis Courts)
Singles competition
1. #21 Roberto Cid (USF 14.19) def. #25 Leandro Toledo (MINN 14.01) 6-3, 4-6, 6-1
2. Sasha Gozun (USF 13.39) def. Jack Hamburg (MINN 13.07) 6-3, 7-6(5)
3. Oliver Pramming (USF 13.32) def. Ruben Weber (MINN 13.27) 6-2, 6-4
4. Matic Spec (MINN 13.78) def. Igna. Gonzalez-Muniz (USF 13.09) 7-5, 6-3
5. Felix Corwin (MINN 13.58) def. Justin Roberts (USF 13.03) 6-7 (4-7), 6-4, 1-0(5)
6. Mathieu Froment (MINN 12.84) def. Vadym Kalyuzhnyy (USF 13.21) 7-6(5), 4-6, 1-0(5)
Doubles competition
1. #37 Oliver Pramming/Justin Roberts (USF) def. #66 Mathieu Froment/Jack Hamburg (MINN) 6-2
2. Sasha Gozun/Vadym Kalyuzhnyy (USF) vs. #80 Felix Corwin/Leandro Toledo (MINN) 4-5, unf
3. Roberto Cid/Igna. Gonzalez-Muniz (USF) def. Eric Frueh/Matic Spec (MINN) 6-2
Match Notes
Minnesota 10-5 (1-0 Big Ten); National ranking #25
South Florida 13-4 (1-0 AAC); National ranking #21

Order of finish: Doubles (3,1); Singles (3,4,2,1,5,6)

SMU jumped out to a 3-1 lead on Oklahoma State but the Cowboys rallied and won the final 3 courts with Tristan Meraut providing the clincher at #4 singles.  Meraut broke Nate Lammons to go up 3-2 in the 3rd and held for 4-2 and never would relinquish the lead.   

SMU recap

#31 Oklahoma State 4, #34 SMU 3
Singles competition
1. Lucas Gerch (OKST 13.70) def. Arturs Kazijevs (SMU 13.60) 7-6 (7-3), 6-3
2. #102 Jakob Sude (OKST 13.52) def. Markus Kerner (SMU 12.58) 6-4, 6-4
3. Samm Butler (SMU 13.78) def. #122 Arjun Kadhe (OKST 13.53) 6-4, 6-4
4. Tristan Meraut (OKST 13.36) def. #110 Nate Lammons (SMU 13.27) 4-6, 6-3, 6-4
5. Arkadijs Slobodkins (SMU 12.69) def. Nicolai Ferrigno (OKST 13.50) 6-3, 7-6
6. Jurence Mendoza (OKST 13.48) def. Charles Nettlefold (SMU 11.64) 6-0, 3-6, 6-2
Doubles competition
1. Arturs Kazijevs/Markus Kerner (SMU) def. #16 Arjun Kadhe/Jakob Sude (OKST) 7-5
2. Nate Lammons/Arkadijs Slobodkins (SMU) vs. Nicolai Ferrigno/Lucas Gerch (OKST) 6-5, unf
3. Samm Butler/Tony Russell (SMU) def. Tristan Meraut/Jurence Mendoza (OKST) 6-3
Match Notes:
Oklahoma State 13-3; National ranking #31
SMU 15-3; National ranking #34
Order of finish: Doubles (3,1); Singles (2,3,5,1,6,4)
T-2:57 A-119


UNLV picked up its 1st ranked win of the year as the Runnin' Rebels upset #44 Wichita State 5-2. Wichita State had its 6 match winning streak snapped after narrowly squeaking past Idaho 4-3 the day before.

UNLV recap

"It was a great team effort today in both singles and doubles," said UNLV head coach Owen Hambrook. "The guys deserved this win. They responded to the challenge and played with great energy to get the in against a very good Wichita State team."

Wichita State recap

UNLV 5, #44 Wichita State 2
March 18, 2015
at Las Vegas, Nev. (Fertitta Tennis Complex)

Singles competition
1. Ace Matias (UNLV 13.75) def. #46 Tin Ostojic (WSU 13.65) 6-3, 6-3
2. Tomislav Gregurovic (WSU 12.86) def. Denys Pume (UNLV 12.91) 7-5, 1-6, 6-3
3. IIja Cuic (WSU 13.16) def. Jakob Amilon (UNLV 12.80) 6-1, 6-3
4. Adam Gage-Brown (UNLV 11.65) def. Guillermo de Vilchez (WSU 12.61) 6-3, 3-6, 7-6(5)
5. Alexandr Cozbinov (UNLV 12.78) def. Jocelyn Devilliers (WSU 12.68) 3-6, 6-4, 6-4
6. Ruben Alberts (UNLV 11.91) def. Miroslav Herzan (WSU 12.57) 7-5, 6-3
Doubles competition
1. #25 Tomislav Gregurovic/Tin Ostojic (WSU) def. Adam Gage-Brown/Ace Matias (UNLV) 6-2
2. Ruben Alberts/Jakob Amilon (UNLV) def. IIja Cuic/Guillermo de Vilchez (WSU) 6-2
3. Denys Pume/Alexandr Cozbinov (UNLV) def. Jocelyn Devilliers/Miroslav Herzan (WSU) 6-2

Order of finish: Doubles (1,2,3); Singles (1,6,3,2,5,4)
Published in Blogs
Oklahoma got pushed by TCU in singles but ultimately the Sooners had too much depth and outlasted TCU 4-1.  After OU took the doubles point they picked up 4 1st sets and ended up getting wins from Andrew Harris, Alex Ghilea, and Spencer Papa at 1, 4, and 5.  TCU's lone point came from freshman Guillermo Nunez as he hammered Dane Webb 6-3, 6-2 at #3.  The 2 remaining matches were abandoned with each early in the 3rd set.  

Oklahoma recap

"It was a good match, head coach John Roddick said. "TCU played very well and they played hard.  We got a pretty good lead on them and they forced us into third sets. Our guys competed well. Doubles was a lot better. We are really coming around there. All in all it's a good day.

Head Coach John Roddick
"Spencer did a great job getting off the court in straight sets like that, Roddick said. "I won't say that it was easy but he did a great job of taking care of business and getting us a 2-1 lead. That really put us in a good spot because we had other first sets. That gives them very little wiggle room and that was probably the biggest key to winning today.

"I think we were in good position on two courts and I'll never doubt Axel until he loses the last point, Roddick said. "We have been good at putting teams in position where they have very little margin for error. When you do that you will come out on top more often than not. We don't have a clock so you have to close them out and our guys did that.

TCU recap

"That was a good college match," head coach David Roditi said. "We played well in all our matches. When we play the No. 1 team on the road, we must capitalize on our opportunities. We lost eight games at deuce at No. 1 and No. 2 doubles and we will learn from that and it will make us a better team next time out. Maybe it's the fact Oklahoma has forgotten how to lose that helped them in those situations, so they deserve credit for that.

"I thought Guillermo and Nick (Chappell) were competing exceptionally well. We have never beaten Dane Webb in a dual match and Guillermo was able to give us that point to even the match at 1-1. Now we must prepare for a tough Oklahoma State on Sunday."

FYI, the number beside the player's school is the player's Universal Tennis Rating as of March 26th.  For more details about UTR check out their website. 

#1 Oklahoma 4, #10 TCU 1
March 27, 2015 at Norman, OK
Singles competition
1. #19 Andrew Harris (OU 14.74) def. #37 Cameron Norrie (TCU 14.30) 7-6(5), 6-4
2. #7 Axel Alvarez (OU 14.59) vs. #36 Nick Chappell (TCU 13.82)  5-7, 6-4, 2-3 DNF
3. #76 Guillermo Nunez (TCU 13.72) def. #26 Dane Webb (OU 14.32) 6-3, 6-2
4. #65 Alex Ghilea (OU 14.15) def. Arnau Dachs (TCU 13.91) 6-2, 4-6, 6-4
5. Spencer Papa (OU 13.81) def. Will Stein (TCU 13.30)  6-4, 6-3
6. Florin Bragusi (OU 13.51) vs. Facundo Lugones (TCU 13.64) 6-3, 6-7(5), 3-2 DNF

Order of finish: 3, 5, 1, 4
Doubles competition
1. #6 Webb/Alvarez (OU) def. #19 Chappell/Stein (TCU)  6-1
2. Harris/Ghilea (OU) def. Norrie/Johnson (TCU)  6-3
3. Papa/Bragusi (OU) vs. Blake/Lugones (TCU) 3-4 DNF
Order of finish: 1, 2

Athens, GA:  Georgia stayed unbeaten in SEC play with a 4-1 win over Vanderbilt. Georgia took the doubles point when its #2 team of Eric Diaz and Nathan Pasha snapped a 5-match losing streak with a 6-3 win and then the Bulldogs picked up singles from Austin Smith, Paul Oosterbaan, and Nick Wood with Wood providing the clincher.  Vanderbilt's Daniel Valent picked up his first career win over a top 20 opponent when he rallied from a set down to win 12 of the final 13 games to knock off #18 Nathan Pasha 4-6, 6-0, 6-1.  Valent got off the court just moments before the Wood clinch.  All other matches were abandoned with #1 singles on serve in the 3rd and #4 just splitting sets.  

The big doubles match at #1 also went unfinished.  

Georgia recap

"We faced windy conditions today, but I told the guys coming in that it was an equalizer and we needed to be tough," said Georgia coach Manuel Diaz. "I thought we did a super job out there. We played great doubles, especially at No. 3, and it was wonderful to see our No. 2 team clinch for us. The singles matches were all competitive, and I'm proud of the effort everywhere."

Said Diaz: "Austin gave us a quick point, and Paul gave us the third point to set up Nick, who lost the first set and turned that around in such a quick manner. He won the second set and got ahead 3-0 in no time, and that was tremendous and showed a lot of composure, tenacity and maturity on his part. He went on to clinch and now we'll have a day or two off before we get ready for a big road trip next week."

Vanderbilt recap

#5 Georgia 4, #17 Vanderbilt 1
March 27, 2015 at Athens, Ga. (Dan Magill Tennis Complex)
Singles competition
1. #28 Wayne Montgomery (UGA 14.59) vs. #7 Gonzales Austin (VAN 14.47) 4-6, 7-5, 0-1, unf
2. #31 Austin Smith (UGA 14.17) def. Rhys Johnson (VAN 13.51) 6-4, 6-3
3. Daniel Valent (VAN 13.88) def. #18 Nathan Pasha (UGA 14.36) 4-6, 6-0, 6-1
4. Ben Wagland (UGA 13.25) vs. Kris Yee (VAN 13.59) 3-6, 6-3, unf
5. Nick Wood (UGA 13.83) def. Suresh Eswaran (VAN 12.86) 3-6, 6-2, 6-1
6. Paul Oosterbaan (UGA 13.63) def. Baker Newman (VAN 12.90) 6-1, 6-4
Doubles competition
1. #1 Austin Smith/Ben Wagland (UGA) vs. #4 Gonzales Austin/Rhys Johnson (VAN) 3-4, unf
2. Eric Diaz/Nathan Pasha (UGA) def. #71 Pen Binet/Baker Newman (VAN) 6-3
3. Wayne Montgomery/Paul Oosterbaan (UGA) def. Suresh Eswaran/Daniel Valent (VAN) 6-1
Match Notes:
Vanderbilt 15-6 (5-4); National ranking #17
Georgia 16-2 (8-0); National ranking #5
Order of finish: Doubles (3,2); Singles (2,6,3,5)

Official: Clark Weaver T-2:08 A-587

Virginia extended its ACC record winning streak to 130 with a 6-1 win over #14 North Carolina in a match that was played indoors with just 3 courts available due to a women's match being played at the same time.  Virginia took the doubles point and picked up singles wins from Ryan Shane and Mitchell Frank to lead 3-0 before North Carolina made a small push.  UNC's Jack Murray was up 2-1 in the 3rd on 3, Robert Kelly was serving for the first set on 4, and Oystein Steiro was a break up early on 5. Unfortunately for North Carolina, Virginia would respond with Collin Altamirano taking the final 5 games at #3 and Thai-Son Kwiatkowski taking 10 of the final 12 games to win on 4. UNC's lone point would come from Steiro at 5.  

Virginia recap

"In a difficult situation, playing on only three courts, the guys handled it well," said head coach Brian Boland. "I was really impressed with North Carolina. They played some great doubles. Luca Corinteli carried the day for us in the doubles and that was a big point at the start of the match. We played well from top to bottom of the lineup and we continue to improve with each match. We look forward to the next challenge, which is Sunday against a great Duke team."

North Carolina recap

#8 Virginia 6, #14 North Carolina 1                    
Doubles Competition
1. #8 Shane/Corinteli (UVA) def. #27 Steiro/Hess-Olesen (UNC) 8-6                     
2. #54 Styslinger/Kwiatkowski (UVa) def. Murray/Schneider (UNC) 8-2               
3. Frank/Altamirano (UVa) vs. Clark/Kelly (UNC) 6-7 DNF
Singles Competition
1. #6 Ryan Shane (UVA 14.54) def. #24 Ronnie Schneider (UNC 14.20) 7-5, 6-3 
2. #29 Mitchell Frank (UVa 14.89) def. #69 Brett Clark (UNC 13.74) 6-0, 6-1               
3. #55 Collin Altamirano (UVa 14.80) def. Jack Murray (UNC 13.95) 6-3, 4-6, 6-2      
4. #10 Thai-Son Kwiatkowski (UVa 14.76) def. #99 Robert Kelly (UNC 13.59) 7-5, 6-2   
5. Oystein Steiro (UNC 13.43) def. Henrik Wiersholm (UVa 13.55) 6-3, 6-4                 
6. J.C. Aragone (UVa 13.94) def. Stuart DePaolo (UNC 12.49) 7-5, 6-1  
Match Notes:
North Carolina 14-7, 3-2; National ranking #14
Virginia 13-3, 6-0; National ranking #8
The match between #1 Oklahoma and #2 Baylor had a ton of hype coming in and boy did those 2 teams deliver a classic. A huge crowd of just under 1500 was on hand in Waco along with many more following along at home via the Baylor blog and live scoreboard.

The first surprise of the day came when the doubles lineups were announced. According to Kim Gorum, who was running Baylor's terrific blog, Baylor's doubles lineups were challenged earlier in the week by the opposing coaches in the Big 12. The coaches didn't like the fact that Baylor's #1 team had a record of 5-4 while it's #2 and #3 teams were a combined 26-3.  The challenge was upheld so Baylor had to move its #2 to #1, its #3 to #2, and while they could have kept the Zsiga/Lupieri duo together at #3 they decided to switch it up and pair Max Tchoutakian with Mate Zsiga at #3.  

Despite the shuffle, Baylor still came out strong and took the doubles point with wins at 1 and 3.  The clinching win at #1 was a little harder than it could have been because Diego Galeano got broke at love when he was serving for it up 5-3 but Baylor would come back and take it in a tiebreak.

Once singles got underway, the Sooner Schooner made a lap around the complex and deposited 4 first sets in OU's bank and then it gave Axel Alvarez and Dane Webb a little extra gas to get those 2 back in their respective matches.

While 4 of the singles matches were tightly contested there were 2 that were never in doubt.  Andrew Harris would be the first to finish at #2 singles as he nearly led wire to wire in his 6-2, 7-5 win over Tony Lupieri.  Alex Ghilea would be off next as he cruised to a 6-3, 6-3 win at #4 over Diego Galeano.  The wins by Harris and Ghilea put Oklahoma ahead 2-1.

It looked like Baylor would tie it back up at 2 when Max Tchoutakian opened up a 5-2 lead in the 3rd set over Dane Webb at #3 singles.  Webb would hold at love to make it 5-3 then Tchoutakian went up 40-30 on his serve to give himself 2 match points.  On the first match point Tchoutakian was overruled by the chair on a baseline call and then on the second match point Tchoutakian would get overruled again this time on a shot on the opposite side of the court (per the BU blog).  I figured after getting broke under those circumstances that Tchoutakian would pack it in but he kept himself in the match and got it to a tiebreak.  Webb would fall behind 1-0 in the tiebreak but he wouldn't trail again and would take it 7-4.  The Webb victory put Oklahoma up 3-1 meaning they just needed 1 of the remaining 3 courts.

This result reminded me of Dane's come from behind win over Virginia's Thai-Son Kwiatkowski when Dane trailed 6-3, 5-3 and faced a match point on TSK's serve yet came back to win in 3.

Baylor's Felipe Rios would pull Baylor to within 3-2 when he avenged his loss to Florin Bragui by winning 5-7, 7-5, 6-4.  After Bragusi took the opening set, he would have a break lead in the second set 4 times but Rios kept breaking back before finally holding for a 5-4 lead.  Bragusi would end up going 1 for 6 on his service game in the second set because Rios would break him one more time to take the set 7-5.  Rios jumped out to a 4-2 lead in the 3rd set before Bragusi tied it up at 4 but Rios would hold and break 1 more time to take the match 5-7, 7-5, 6-4.

The matchup at #1 singles between the ITA #1 Julian Lenz and ITA #2 Axel Alvarez was everything it was built up to be.  Lenz jumped out to a double break lead in the 1st set and was serving up 4-1 but Alvarez charged back to force a tiebreak.  Alvarez would go up 4-1 in the tiebreak before Lenz himself made a comeback to win 6 straight points to take the tiebreak 7-4.  Alvarez jumped out to a 3-1 lead in the 2nd but Lenz would break back and knot it at 3.  Alvarez would break again, hold, and break yet again to take the final 3 games of the 2nd set and take it 6-3.  After Alvarez held to go up 1-0 in the 3rd, Lenz called a medical timeout to have his knee looked at before the 30-40 point.  Lenz would get broke following the timeout and then Alvarez held for 3-0. After 3 straight holds, Lenz would break Alvarez to get the match back on serve but Alvarez would then break back to go up 5-3. Lenz would then break Alvarez, who was serving for the match, but Axel finally said enough is enough and broke back to win the match 6-7, 6-3, 6-4 and with that Oklahoma had the win.

Seconds after the clinch, Baylor's Mate Zsiga would close out his tiebreak at #5 but it was too little too late for BU.

Sometimes my predictions may not be the best but I came about as close as possible to nailing this one on the head.  The only singles match I missed was Webb/Tchoutakain with my prediction of Tchoutakian in 3 coming up short thanks to Dane's tremendous comeback.

If this were a boxing match, somebody would be asking for a rematch.  I think we'll probably get at least 1 more from these 2 in the coming weeks.

I thought this was a cool pic that Tom Perrotta posted on twitter:

Short video clip below from Baylor:

Oklahoma recap

"It was an exciting match in a tough environment," head coach John Roddick said. "I am just glad we got out of there with a win. It was an unbelievable effort by our guys. All-in-all our mentality and our competitiveness was fantastic."

"Harris and Ghilea going through and winning and giving us two points on the board with straight-sets wins was really nice," Roddick said.

"Dane fighting off two match points is just Dane being Dane," Roddick said. "You always get that effort win or lose from Dane and 99 percent of the time he seems to come out on top in those matches. I couldn't be more proud."

"Florin had a chance to win there and he played some really good tennis," Roddick said. "He played well enough to win. Two good players played a great match and someone had to lose."

Ohio State Regional
OSU Varsity Tennis Center - Columbus, OH

[11] Ohio State (25-8) vs. [49-64] Buffalo (12-10) - Friday 1pm - #11 Ohio State got an at-large bid after losing to Illinois 4-0 in the Big 10 Championship Finals while Buffalo earned its first ever NCAA bid after beating Binghamton 4-2 in the MAC Championship. Buffalo went 0-4 on the year against ranked opponents. 

Doubles Records: Ohio State 26-7, Buffalo 11-11
UTR Starting 6 Power Rating: Ohio State 84, Buffalo 74

FYI, the number beside the player's school is the player's Universal Tennis Rating as of May 1st.  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. #47 Mikael Torpegaard (OSU 13.92) vs. Damien David (UB 12.95)
2. #49 Chris Diaz (OSU 14.27) vs. Pablo Alvarez (UB 12.46)
3. Herkko Pollanen (OSU 13.56) vs. Sebastian Ionescu (UB 12.61)
4. Hunter Callahan (OSU 14.10) vs. Jonathan Hannestad (UB 12.27)
5. Kevin Metka (OSU 13.82) vs. Amar Hromic (UB 11.91)
6. #97 Ralf Steinbach (OSU 13.90) vs. Sergio Arevalillo (UB 11.78)
Others who could play Matt Mendez (OSU 13.03) 

Buckeyes take the doubles point and then pick up wins from Diaz, Callahan, and Steinbach. Prediction: Ohio State 4-0

[17-32] Vanderbilt (19-7) vs. [33-48] Notre Dame (14-11) - Friday 10am - Both teams got at-large bids with #24 Vanderbilt dropping its finale 4-1 to #14 Ole Miss in the SEC quarters while #35 Notre Dame lost to #42 Georgia Tech 4-0 in the opening round of the ACC Tournament. 

Doubles Records: Vanderbilt 15-11, Notre Dame 18-7
UTR Starting 6 Power Rating: Vanderbilt 82, Notre Dame 81

Projected Singles Lineups
1. #10 Gonzales Austin (VU 14.58) vs. #9 Quentin Monaghan (ND 14.67)
2. Rhys Johnson (VU 13.58) vs. Josh Hagar (ND 13.57) 
3. #88 Daniel Valent (VU 14.08) vs. Eddy Covalschi (ND 12.90)
4. Kris Yee (VU 13.63) vs. Billy Pecor (ND 13.05)
5. Suresh Eswaran (VU 13.12) vs. Eric Schnurrenberger (ND 13.27)
6. Baker Newman (VU 12.90) vs. Alex Lawson (ND 13.20) 
Others who could play Kenny Sabacinski (ND 12.72) 

Dual-Match Singles Records - # in ( ) is W-L vs. ranked:
1. Austin 20-2 (12-2) vs. Monaghan 20-3 (13-3)
2. Johnson 8-10 (1-5) vs. Hager 10-12 (2-10)
3. Valent 19-3 (2-1) vs. Covalschi 6-16 (1-8)
4. Yee 7-11 vs. Pecor 7-11 (0-3)
5. Eswaran 12-9 (0-1) vs. Schnurrenberger 5-5 (0-1)
6. Newman 7-7 vs. Lawson 8-11 (0-1)

#1 singles - Austin won 9 of his last 10 while Monaghan won 12 of his last 13. Prediction: Austin (VU) in 3
#2 singles - Johnson split his last 6 while Hagar won 5 of his last 8.  Prediction: Hagar (ND) in 2.
#3 singles - Valent won 6 of his final 7 while Covalschi dropped his last 7. Prediction: Valent (VU) in 2
#4 singles - Yee splits his last 4 while Pecor lost 6 of his last 7. Prediction: Yee (VU) in 3
#5 singles - Eswaran won his last 4 while Schnurrenberger lost his last 5. Prediction: Eswaran (VU) in 3
#6 singles - 4 of Newman's last 5 matches didn't finish though he won 3 of his last 4 that did finish while Lawson lost his last 2 after winning his 3 prior. Prediction: DNF with Lawson (ND) leading.

I'll take Notre Dame in doubles and Hager in singles but I like Austin, Valent, Yee, and Eswaran for Vandy. Prediction: Vanderbilt 4-2

Texas A&M Regional
Mitchell Tennis Center - College Station, TX

[6] Texas A&M (21-4) vs. [49-64] Eastern Kentucky (18-7) - Friday 3pm - #5 Texas A&M got an automatic by beating #7 Georgia 4-2 to win the SEC Championship while Eastern Kentucky got an automatic bid for defeating Austin Peay 4-2 in the Ohio Valley Championship. Eastern Kentucky went 0-1 against ranked opponents losing to #32 Louisville 6-1.

Doubles Records: Texas A&M 21-4, Eastern Kentucky 14-9
UTR Starting 6 Power Rating: Texas A&M 85, Eastern Kentucky 72

Projected Singles Lineups
1. #47 Jeremy Efferding (TAMU 14.39) vs. Alex Alvaro (EKU 12.47)
2. #80 Shane Vinsant (TAMU 14.20) vs. Ramon Van Flymen (EKU 12.29)
3. #84 Arthur Rinderknech (TAMU 14.38) vs. Daridge Saidi (EKU 11.70)
4. #78 Harrison Adams (TAMU 13.65) vs. Sebastian Mueller (EKU 11.91)
5. #92 AJ Catanzariti (TAMU 14.35) vs. Diogo Soares (EKU 12.13)
6. Jordi Arconada (TAMU 13.63) vs. Juanjo De La Llera (EKU 11.52)

The Colonels had a nice year but it'll come to an end in College Station as Texas A&M picks up the doubles point and wins from Efferding, Rinderknech, and Catanzariti. Prediction: Texas A&M 4-0

[17-32] Oklahoma State (16-9) vs. [33-48] New Mexico (20-10) - Friday 12pm - Both teams got at-large selections with #32 Oklahoma State getting one despite dropping 4 straight and 6 of 7 while #38 New Mexico had won 9 of 10 until being upset at home by #63 Boise State in the Mountain West semifinals.  

Doubles Records: Oklahoma State 12-11, New Mexico 17-7
UTR Starting 6 Power Rating: Oklahoma State 82, New Mexico 78

Projected Singles Lineups
1. #32 Jakob Sude (OKST 13.78) vs. Hayden Sabatka (NM 13.32)
2. #115 Lucas Gerch (OKST 13.68) vs. #89 Samir Iftikhar (NM 13.40)
3. #122 Arjun Kadhe (OKST 13.40) vs. Mitch McDaniels (NM 13.07)
4. Tristan Meraut (OKST 13.64) vs. Bart Van Leijsen (NM 12.85)
5. Lukas Finzelberg (OKST 13.81) vs. Augie Ge (NM 12.19)
6. Nicolai Ferrigno (OKST 13.58) vs. James Hignett (NM 12.81)
Others who could play: Jurence Mendoza (OKST 13.12), Jorge Escutia (NM 12.92)

Dual-Match Singles Records - # in ( ) is W-L vs. ranked:
1. Sude 9-8 (4-7) vs. Sabatka 15-12 (1-6)
2. Gerch 14-4 (3-2) vs. Iftikhar 7-7 (1-2)
3. Kadhe 10-9 (2-6) vs. McDaniels 15-6 (1-2)
4. Meraut 8-3 (0-1) vs. Van Leijsen 11-8 (1-0)
5. Finzelberg 9-7 (1-2) vs. Ge 7-2
6. Ferrigno 11-3 vs. Hignet 10-10

#1 singles - 4 of Sude's final 5 matches went unfinished though he has wins on the year over Notre Dame's #9 Quentin Monaghan, Texas #4 Soren Hess-Olesen, and TCU's #39 Cameron Norrie. Sabatka won 4 of his final 6 with his only ranked win coming over San Diego State's #121 Freddy Gelbrich. Prediction: Sude (OSU) in 2

#2 singles - Gerch dropped his final 3 though the opponents were #7 Andrew Harris, #49 Nick Chappell, and Hugo Dojas. Gerch has wins on the year over Texas's #42 Lloyd Glasspool and Memphis's #98 Andrew Watson.  Iftikhar split his last 8 and his best win came in his match of the year when he beat Texas Tech's #37 Felipe Soares. Prediction: Gerch (OSU) in 2.

#3 singles - Kadhe dropped his final 4 though all his opponents were ranked while McDaniels won 5 of his last 6. McDaniels spent some time at #1 earlier in the season and he beat Arkansas's #79 Giammarco Micolani and took TCU's #49 Nick Chappell to a 3rd set. Prediction: McDaniels (NM) in 2.

#4 singles - Meraut dropped his final 3 and missed most of April with an injury while Van Leijsen won 6 of his last 7 and beat Texas Tech's #117 Alex Sendegeya earlier in the year. Prediction: DNF with Meraut (OSU) leading.

#5 singles - Finzelberg dropped his final 3 but had won 5 of 6 prior while Ge played 4 matches in April going 1-0 with 3 others that didn't finish. Prediction: Finzelberg (OSU) in 2.

#6 singles - Ferrigno won 3 of his last 4 though he took a bad beating in his final match against TCU's Will Stein losing 6-0, 6-1 while Hignet lost his last 4 though he'd won the 5 prior. Prediction: Ferrigno (OSU) in 2.

I'll take New Mexico in doubles and I like McDaniels at 3 for the Lobos but it's all Okie State everywhere else with Sude, Gerch, Finzelberg, and Ferrigno all rolling in straight sets. Prediction: Oklahoma State 4-2
Published in Blogs
The big story of the day took place in the wee hours of the night here in the United States as former Wake Forest Demon Deacon #328 Noah Rubin (UTR 15.01) stunned #18 Benoit Paire (UTR 15.39) in 3 tiebreak sets in the opening round of the 2016 Australian Open. I'll be the first to admit I was sound asleep when the match took place but when my 3-year came barreling into our room at 6am one of the first things I did was pull up Twitter and that's when I saw the good news. I'll let these Twitter posts from Parsa, Martin Blackman, Josh Meiseles, Noah Rubin, and the Australian Open tell you the story

This was Rubin's fourth appearance in a Grand Slam and his second main draw match with the other main draw appearance coming at the 2014 US Open after he got a wild card for winning Kalamazoo.

Rubin In Majors:
2016 AO - beat #18 Benoir Paire (FRA) 7-6(4), 7-6(6), 7-6(5) in R1; vs. #167 Pierre-Hugues Herbert (FRA) in R2
2015 USO - beat #257 Liang-Chi Huang (TPE) 6-2, 7-5 in QR128; lost to #91 Guido Pella (ARG) 6-4, 7-6(6) in QR64
2014 USO - lost to #66 Federico Delbonis (ARG) 6-4, 6-3, 6-0 in R1
2013 USO - lost to #188 Amir Weintraub (ISR) 6-4, 2-6, 6-2 in QR128

So how did Noah win it - the stats below tell us that Paire appeared to be going for broke as evidenced by his 61 winners and 72 unforced errors. Rubin was more steady with 22 winners and 22 unforced errors.

1st set - Both guys were holding with ease with there only being 2 break points - Rubin had 1 in Paire's 3-4 service game and Paire had 1 in Rubin's 4-4 service game. Paire went up *2-0 in the TB before Rubin won 4 straight to go up 4-2*. Paire pulled to within 3-4* but Rubin won both points on his serve to go up *6-3 and then finished the set 2 points later to take the TB 7-4.

2nd set - Rubin got the first break of the match when he broke Paire from 15-40 to go up *3-2 and then he consolidated the break with a hold from 40-15 to go up 4-2. Paire then reeled off 3 games in a row including a break of Rubin serve from 15-40 to even it at 4-4. Both guys held 2 more times to get the set into a tiebreak and in the tiebreak they stayed on serve until Rubin got a mini-break to go up 5-3*. Paire got the mini-break back to even it at 5-5 before Rubin went up 6-5*. Paire tied it at 6-6 but Rubin took the next 2 to bag the tiebreak 8-6.

3rd set - Paire broke Rubin's opening service game from 30-40 to go up *1-0 and consolidated the break to go up 2-0*.  There were 5 straight holds until Rubin broke Paire's *4-3 service game from 30-40 to even it at 4-4 however Paire would break right back from 30-40 to go up *5-4. Paire had 2 set points on his serve (40-30, Ad-Paire) but Rubin fought back and broke to even it at 5-5. Rubin held at love go up 6-5* and then Paire held from 40-15 to send the set to a tiebreak. Rubin served first in the tiebreak and quickly went up *3-0 though Paire got 1 of the mini-breaks back to pull within 4-1*. Paire won the next 3 points to even it at 4-4 but Rubin took the next 2 to go up 6-4*. Paire fought off the first match point but Rubin converted the second to close out Paire 7-6(4), 7-6(6), 7-6(5).


Georgia closed out the MLK Invitational in Atlanta with a solid showing against Oklahoma. The Bulldogs won 2 of 3 doubles matches and 4 of 6 singles with Wayne Montgomery named the MLK Singles Champion after going 3-0 in singles.  Ole Miss's Filip Kraljevic and Zvonimir Babic were named MLK Doubles Champions after going 3-0 in doubles.

Undefeated Singles (Min 2 Matches)
Wayne Montgomery (UGA) 3-0
Ben Wagland (UGA) 3-0
Chris Eubanks (GT) 2-0
Florin Bragusi (OU) 2-0

Undefeated Doubles (Min 2 Matches)
Filip Kraljevic & Zvonimir Babic (Ole Miss) 3-0
Wayne Montgomery & Emil Reinbergy (UGA) 3-0
Paul Oosterbaan & Jan Zielinski (UGA) 3-0

#7 Georgia vs. #2 Oklahoma 
Jan. 18, 2016 at Atlanta, Ga. Ken Byers Tennis Complex
Singles competition
1. #60 Axel Alvarez Llamas (OU 14.71) def. #28 Austin Smith (UGA 14.34) 6-2, 7-5
2. #92 Alex Ghilea (OU 14.17) def. #105 Walker Duncan (UGA 13.43) 6-4, 6-2
3. Emil Reinberg (UGA 13.27) def. Andre Biro (OU 13.71) 6-4, 4-6, 6-2
4. #20 Wayne Montgomery (UGA 14.28) def. Spencer Papa (OU 14.02) 7-5, 4-6, 6-1
5. Ben Wagland (UGA 13.22) def. John Milstead (OU 10.05) 6-1, 7-5
6. Jan Zielinski (UGA 13.68) def. Austin Siegel (OU 13.21) 6-4, 6-2
Doubles competition
1. Spencer Papa/Axel Alvarez Llamas (OU) def. #10 Ben Wagland/Austin Smith (UGA) 6-3
2. Jan Zielinski/Paul Oosterbaan (UGA) def. Andre Biro/Alex Ghilea (OU) 7-6 (4)
3. #45 Wayne Montgomery/Emil Reinberg (UGA) def. Austin Siegel/Florin Bragusi (OU) 6-4

Comments from Georgia's recap
"Overall I thought we played a great match today, head coach Manuel Diaz said. "To be honest I thought that we could've played a little bit better in doubles than we did. We got broke at number two, three times, but we still competed so well and played extremely well from behind. It's a good sign to be able to come out with a victory when you play a little bit less than your very best. I was very impressed with everyone's overall level today.

Comments from Oklahoma's recap
"He (Alvarez) came out and was more focused today than in days past, Oklahoma assistant coach Bobby Reynolds said. "He took care of business. He got on top of his guy early. His opponent played well and served well, but I felt like from a tennis playing standpoint Axel constructed the points better today and didn't force it.

"Alex had a tough one yesterday, but he played a new freshman from Georgia--who is going to be a good player--and dominated, Reynolds said. "He showed him that he was the older guy and he took control with his forehand. When he is hitting his forehand big there aren't too many people who are able to beat him.

"We had a lot of opportunities in doubles, Reynolds said. "We just have to play the big points, bigger and better. That will come with more time and more practice. We're still finding the exact matchups for us as a team and where we want to put them. We came out with a lot of energy though and that's what I asked of them so that was good.

"The three matches that everybody got were good high quality tennis,  Reynolds said. "For being the first matches back after a long break, I was happy with the level they played at.

MLK Invitational Team/Individual Performance (Singles/Doubles):

#7 Georgia (14-8/7-4)
Austin Smith 2-1/1-2
Wayne Montgomery 3-0/3-0
Walker Duncan 1-2/1-1
Paul Oosterbaan 1-1/3-0
Ben Wagland  3-0/1-2
Emil Reinberg 2-1/3-0
Jan Zielinski 1-2/3-0
Andy Martinez 1-1/0-2
*Nick Wood didn't play

#2 Oklahoma (11-8/4-5)
Axel Alvarez 2-1/2-1
Alex Ghilea 2-1/1-2
Spencer Papa 2-1/2-1
Florin Bragusi 2-0/1-2
Austin Siegel 1-1/1-1
Andre Biro 2-1/1-2
John Milstead 0-3/0-1
*Andrew Harris/Maxime Mora didn't play

#19 Ole Miss (8-14/6-5)
Stefan Lindmark 2-1/0-3
Gustav Hansson 2-1/0-3
Filip Kraljevic 1-2/3-0
Grey Hamilton 1-2/2-1
Fabian Fallert 1-2/2-1
Vinod Gowda 1-2/1-1
Zvonimir Babic 1-0/3-0
Ricardo Jorge 0-3/1-1
Robert Mounger 0-1/0-0

#43 Georgia Tech (9-13/4-7)
Christopher Eubanks 2-0/0-3
Carlos Benito 1-2/1-2
Nathan Rakitt 0-3/1-2
Michael Kay 1-0/0-1
Cole Fiegel 1-2/2-1
Andrew Li 1-1/2-1
Casey Kay 1-2/1-2
Daniel Yun 1-2/1-1
Elijah Melendez 1-1/0-1
*Phillip Gresk didn't play


I thought the match in Memphis between #28 Oklahoma State and #45 Memphis was going to be tight one but Oklahoma State overpowered the hosts and waltzed to a 4-0 shutout. The Pokes rolled at #1 and #2 doubles and then picked up straight set wins at #2, #5, and #6 with Arjun Kadhe clinching it at #2.  

#28 Oklahoma State 4, #45 Memphis 0
Jan. 18, 2016 at Memphis, TN (The Racquet Club of Memphis)
Doubles competition
1. #9 Arjun Kadhe/Julian Cash (OSU) def. Kai Lemke/Louis Asser (UM) 6-1
2. Temur Ismailov/Lucas Gerch (OSU) def. Ryan Peniston/Felix Rauch (UM) 6-2
3. Andrew Watson/Shakeel Manji (UM) vs. #53 Jurence Mendoza/Lukas Finzelberg (OSU) 5-3 unf
Singles competition
1. Temur Ismailov (OSU 14.10) vs. Ryan Peniston (UM 13.92) 6-1, 4-6, 2-2 unf
2. #112 Arjun Kadhe (OSU 13.65) def. #87 Andrew Watson (UM 13.73) 7-6, 6-4
3. Kai Lemke (UM 13.33) vs. #68 Julian Cash (OSU 13.66) 6-3, 2-6, 4-1 unf
4. Lucas Gerch (OSU 13.72) vs. Chris Patzanovsky (UM 12.52) 3-6, 6-1, 4-0 unf
5. Tristan Meraut (OSU 13.35) def. Shakeel Manji (UM 12.34) 6-4, 6-3
6. Lukas Finzelberg (OSU 13.58) def. Felix Rauch (UM 12.48) 6-3, 6-3 
Match Notes:
Oklahoma State 3-0; National Ranking #28
Memphis 0-1: National Ranking #45
Order of Finish: Doubles (1,2); Singles (5,6,2)
T-2:14; A-200

Comments from Oklahoma State's recap
"It was a great match overall and a good road win for us," coach Jay Udwadia said. "Memphis had a good team and they competed hard. I was happy with the way we started in doubles and keet that momentum going into singles.

Comments from Memphis's recap
"I think this was a really good college tennis match," Head Coach Paul Goebel said. "We knew we had a tough first test for us with today's match, but we needed it. We stay right up against good competition with Louisville and the ITA Kick-Off Weekend next weekend. I think we saw a lot of good things from our young team here. We battled back in some matches and have learned some things we need to work on before the next match."

Baylor's Julian Lenz won the Sherwood Cup on Monday defeating UCLA's Gage Brymer 6-1, 6-3 in the singles final while UCLA got some revenge in the doubles final with Joseph DiGiulio and Karue Sell knocking off Baylor's Will Little and Jimmy Bendeck 6-3.

Quotes from Baylor's Matt Knoll on the weekend
"I am happy for Julian. He played really well all weekend. This was a significant step for him. He was hurt in the fall and to come out with the focus and professionalism and the hunger that he did was a great sign for him for the spring. - head coach Matt Knoll on Lenz.  "Julian has done a super job since he came back from the holiday of having the right mindset in practice. He has focused on the things he wants to work on and I think that is what set him up to play so well. It is amazing how when you apply yourself in practice that carries over to the matches. - Knoll on Lenz's preparation that led to success

"Jimmy and Will were a blast. They were the stars of the tournament in terms of their energy and enthusiasm. They came out and competed hard. They brought the team aspect to doubles, which I think some people take for granted. They pumped each other up and brought out the best in each other. It was a really highlight of the tournament for us. - Knoll on the doubles duo of Jimmy Bendeck and Will Little

Texas Tech finished off the weekend 6-0 after defeating New Mexico 4-1 and Arizona 4-0. The final day of the 4-day weekend saw temperatures in the 30s which meant singles was played first with doubles only being played if the match was tied at 3-3. That's exactly what happened in the match between Pacific and #41 New Mexico with the Lobo's Ricky Hernandez-Tong winning the final singles match at #6 to force doubles to be played. Pacific won at both #1 and #2 doubles to pull up the upset over the ranked Lobos. Each coach has some good comments below about the weekend so make sure you give those a read. 

Pacific 4, #41 New Mexico 3
Jan 18, 2016 at Lubbock, Texas (McLeod Texas Center) 
Singles competition
1. Sam Varbeck (PAC) def. Bart Van Leijsen (NM) 7-5, 6-2
2. Hayden Sabatka (NM) def. Daniel Alameh (PAC) 7-5, 6-3
3. Miguel Diaz (PAC) def. Jorge Escutia (NM) 6-2, 6-2
4. Jose Chamba (PAC) def. Rodolfo Jauregui (NM) 6-4, 6-2
5. Agustus Ge (NM) def. Alex Giannini (PAC) 7-5, 6-4
6. Ricky Hernandez-Tong (NM) def. Bernardo Oliveira (PAC) 1-6, 7-5, 6-4
Doubles competition
1. Sam Varbeck/Jose Chamba (PAC) def. #8 Hayden Sabatka/Bart Van Leijsen (NM) 6-3
2. Daniel Alameh/Alex Giannini (PAC) def. Agustus Ge/Rodolfo Jauregui (NM) 6-4
3. Jorge Escutia/Ricky Hernandez-Tong (NM) vs. Miguel Diaz/Bernardo Oliveira (PAC) no result
Match Notes:
New Mexico 1-4; National ranking #41
Pacific 2-3

Comments from Pacific's recap
This busy weekend of college tennis gets started with a couple of good ones in Durham and Stillwater. Illinois was dominate in its first three matches last weekend while Duke has taken a few tough losses at home with its lone win coming over an unranked Elon. Wake Forest faced some resistance last weekend against Auburn while Oklahoma State was an eye lash away from upsetting #3 TCU before falling 4-3. I expect both matches to be highly competitive despite the rankings difference.

#7 Illinois (3-0) at #24 Duke (1-2)  - 6pm est - Live Scoring & Streaming - Most knew that Duke would struggle a little this season after losing Jason Tahir, Raphael Hemmeler, Bruno Semenzato, and Chris Mengel but the one thing that has been a bit surprising has been the play of Nicolas Alvarez. The sophomore from Lima, Peru started off the fall by making it to the finals of the Oracle/ITA Masters but since then he's just 2-5. Alvarez lost to San Diego's Uros Petronijevic in straight sets last weekend and the week prior he lost in straights to Kentucky's William Bushamuka. Both of those guys are solid players but to lose both in straight sets was surprising.

Despite taking a few losses and dropping to #24 in rankings, Duke still has the talent to beat higher ranked teams so Illinois will need to bring its best to avoid a loss. Duke won 4-3 in Champaign last season though you can't compare last year to this year due to the roster turnover.

Projected Singles Lineup:
1. Aleks Vukic (ILL 14.33) vs. #12 Nicolas Alvarez (DU 14.16)
2. #21 Jared Hiltzik (ILL 14.11) vs. #102 TJ Pura (DU 13.37)
3. #41 Aron Hiltzik (ILL 13.74) vs. Vincent Lin (DU 13.40)
4. #67 Julian Childers (ILL 13.36) vs. Catalin Mateas (DU 13.67)
5. Alex Jesse (ILL 12.89) vs. Adrian Chamdani (DU 12.90)
6. Asher Hirsch (ILL 12.79) vs. Josh Levine (DU 12.69)
Depth: Toshiki Matsuya (ILL 13.07); Ryan Dickerson (DU 13.32)

Illinois should sweep the top 3 and I like Julian Childers at #4 though Mateas has yet to lose yet. Chamdani and Levine will be slight favorites at #5 and #6 for Duke and I think Duke probably gets the doubles point. If they play all the courts out it could end up 4-3 but I think the Illini finishes it a little sooner. Prediction: Illinois 4-2 

Last Season's Meeting:

#11 Duke 4, #8 Illinois 3
Jan 30, 2015 at Urbana, Ill. (Atkins Tennis Center)
Doubles competition
1. Nicolas Alvarez/Raphael Hemmeler (DU) def. #3 Ross Guignon/Tim Kopinski (ILL) 6-3
2. Jason Tahir/Josh Levine (DU) def. Aron Hiltzik/Jared Hiltzik (ILL) 6-3
3. Chris Mengel/Bruno Semenzato (DU) led Farris Gosea/Aleks Vukic (ILL) 5-3, unfinished
Singles competition
1. #36 Jason Tahir (DU) def. Farris Gosea (ILL) 6-4, 7-6 (9-7)
2. #31 Jared Hiltzik (ILL) def. #18 Nicolas Alvarez (DU) 5-7, 6-4, 6-4
3. #40 Tim Kopinski (ILL) def. #103 Raphael Hemmeler (DU) 3-6, 6-2, 6-0
4. #44 Aleks Vukic (ILL) def. #112 Bruno Semenzato (DU) 6-1, 6-1
5. Chris Mengel (DU) def. Blake Bazarnik (ILL) 6-2, 7-5
6. Josh Levine (DU) def. Ross Guignon (ILL) 0-6, 7-6 (7-3), 6-4
Match Notes
Duke 5-0; National ranking #11
Illinois 3-1; National ranking #8
Order of finish: Doubles (1,2); Singles (4,5,1,3,6,2)
T-2:30 A-600

#11 Wake Forest (4-0) at #25 Oklahoma State (4-1)- 7pm est/6pm cst - Live Scoring & Streaming - Last season these teams met in Winston-Salem with Wake Forest winning 4-3 though it doesn't appear that there will be any individual rematches in this year's meeting. Wake Forest has the deeper lineup so for Oklahoma State to have a shot in this one they'll need to grab the doubles point. The matchup at #1 between a pair of January admits should be pretty even with both guys having ATP rankings inside the top 600 (Ismailov 449/Chrysochos 574).

Projected Singles Lineup:
1. Petros Chrysochos (WF 14.01) vs. Temur Ismailov (OSU 13.95)
2. #26 Skander Mansouri (WF 14.23) vs. #112 Arjun Kadhe (OSU 13.81)
3. #103 Jonathan Ho (WF 13.99) vs. #68 Julian Cash (OSU 13.73)
4. Romain Bogaerts (WF 14.00) vs. Lucas Gerch (OSU 13.68)
5. Dennis Uspensky (WF 13.59) vs. Tristan Meraut (OSU 13.38)
6. Christian Seraphim (WF 13.55) vs. Lukas Finzelberg (OSU 13.65)
Depth: #110 Maksim Kan (WF 13.15); Jurence Mendoza (OSU 13.21)

Wake Forest lost the doubles point to Auburn last week and came back from a ways down to beat Tennessee while Oklahoma State rolled over TCU and Harvard. I think Oklahoma State takes the doubles point but Wake will go back ahead with wins from Skander Mansouri and Dennis Uspensky at #2 and #5. Julian Cash will tie it up with a win at #3 but Christian Seraphim and Romain Bogaerts will get the Deacs to the magic number 4 for the win. If they finish out the match at #1 Ismailov will pull it out. Prediction: Wake Forest 4-3

Last Year's Meeting:

#19 Wake Forest 4, #32 Oklahoma State 3
Feb 21, 2015 at Winston-Salem, N.C. (Wake Forest Tennis Complex)
Singles competition
1. #55 Noah Rubin (WF 14.79) def. #88 Jakob Sude (OKST 13.54) 6-3, 7-6 (3)
2. #14 Romain Bogaerts (WF 14.34) def. #87 Arjun Kadhe (OKST 13.57) 7-6 (2), 7-6 (7)
3. Lucas Gerch (OKST 13.82) def. Skander Mansouri (WF 13.07) 6-7 (1-7), 7-6 (10), 1-0 (10-2)
4. #57 Jon Ho (WF 13.49) def. Lukas Finzelberg (OKST 13.82) 7-5, 6-3
5. Tristan Meraut (OKST 13.26) def. Christian Seraphim (WF 13.40) 6-3, 6-4
6. Nicolai Ferrigno (OKST 13.38) def. Keivon Tabrizi (WF 12.92) 6-3, 5-7, 6-2
Doubles competition
1. #50 Skander Mansouri/Christian Seraphim (WF) def. #10 Jakob Sude/Arjun Kadhe (OKST) 6-1
2. Romain Bogaerts/Keivon Tabrizi (WF) def. Tristan Meraut/Jurence Mendoza (OKST) 6-4
3. Nicolai Ferrigno/Lucas Gerch (OKST) def. Sam Bloom/Anthony Delcore (WF) 6-3
Match Notes
Oklahoma State 8-3, 0-0 Big 12; National ranking #32
Wake Forest 7-2, 0-0 ACC; National ranking #19
Order of finish: Doubles (1,3,2); Singles (5,4,1,6,2,3)
T-2:49 A-234

Published in Blogs
There was a solid schedule of matches on Friday and fortunately for us viewers almost all of them had a live stream available. There were a pair of top 25 teams going head to head and as expected both were close matches. #7 Illinois held on for a 4-3 road win at #24 Duke while #25 Oklahoma State pulled off the upset and beat #11 Wake Forest.

Oklahoma State took the doubles point with wins at #1 and #2 and then picked up first sets at #3, #5, and #6 while Wake took the rest. It looked like Dennis Uspensky was going to get the first set at #5 but Tristan Meraut broke him and then took the tiebreak 7-4.

Wake's Skander Mansouri tied it at 1-1 with a quick win at #2 but Oklahoma State's Arjun Kadhe answered with a straight set win at #3. Wake tied it at 2-2 when Jon Ho won in straights at #4 but Oklahoma State's Tristan Meraut answered with a straight set win at #5. Meraut got broke serving for the match up 7-6, 5-3 but he managed to break back to win it. Oklahoma State's Lukas Finzelberg would break Christian Seraphim's 2-2 serve game in the third set and would hold three more times to close it out at #6 by a score of 6-4, 5-7, 6-4. Below are video clips from Oklahoma State of the doubles and singles clinchers along with some words from head coach Jay Udwadia

#25 Oklahoma State 4, #11 Wake Forest 2
January 29, 2016 at Stillwater, OK (Greenwood Tennis Center)
Singles competition
1. Temur Ismailov (OSU 13.95) vs. Petros Chrysochos (WF 14.01) 3-6, 6-4, 6-5, unf.
2. #26 Skander Mansouri (WF 14.23) def. #68 Julian Cash (OSU 13.73) 6-1, 6-4
3. #112 Arjun Kadhe (OSU 13.81) def. Romain Bogaerts (WF 14.00) 6-3, 6-2
4. #103 Jonathan Ho (WF 13.99) def. Lucas Gerch (OSU 13.68) 6-2, 6-3
5. Tristan Meraut (OSU 13.38) def. Dennis Uspensky (WF 13.59) 7-6(4), 6-4
6. Lukas Finzelberg (OSU 13.65) def. Christian Seraphim (WF 13.55) 6-4, 5-7, 6-4
Doubles competition
1. #9 Julian Cash/Arjun Kadhe (OKST) def. #25 Skander Mansouri/Christian Seraphim (WF) 6-4
2. Temur Ismailov/Lucas Gerch (OKST) def. Petros Chrysochos/Jon Ho (WF) 6-4
3. #53 Lukas Finzelberg/Jurence Mendoza (OKST) vs. Bogaerts/Uspensky (WF) 4-5, unf.
Match Notes
Oklahoma State 5-1; National ranking #25
Wake Forest 4-1; National ranking #11
Order of finish: Doubles (1,2); Singles (2,3,4,5)

Quotes from Oklahoma State's recap:
"Today was about getting over the hump and getting a nice win to start the season," coach Jay Udwadia said. "It was nice to capitalize it at home."

"It's a lot easier to win three singles points, than four, especially when you're playing the top teams in the country," Udwadia said. "I love how the team is playing with great energy and good spirit in doubles because it reflects our team."

"I played pretty solid, but I can say everyone else gave 100 percent and that makes me really happy," Kadhe said. "We needed to beat a top-15 team because mentally it helps takes everyone's confidence to another level."

"I was just trying to focus on my match and not worry about the other guys," Meraut said. "I'm here for them and I'll always cheer them on, but I wanted to take care of my point first. It was awesome being part of something like this for the first time."

"First, I want to thank the crowd today because they were really loud and that's what helped us," Kadhe said.

"You try to go one match at a time and we're not going to look past anyone this season, especially since Minnesota beat us last year," Udwadia said.

Illinois won the all-important doubles point with wins at #2 and #3 and then got singles victories from Jared Hiltzik, Aleks Vukic, and Alex Jesse to hold on for a 4-3 win. Give Duke's recap a read for all the pertinent details because as I've said before they do a tremendous job keeping tabs on everything.

#7 Illinois 4, #24 Duke 3
January 29, 2016 at Durham, NC (Sheffield Indoor Tennis Center)
Singles competition
1. #21 Jared Hiltzik (ILL 14.11) def. #12 Nicolas Alvarez (DU 14.16) 6-2, 6-4
2. Aleks Vukic (ILL 14.33) def. #102 TJ Pura (DU 13.37) 6-2, 4-6, 6-3
3. Catalin Mateas (DU 13.67) def. #41 Aron Hiltzik (ILL 13.74) 7-6 (7-5), 6-4
4. Vincent Lin (DU 13.40) def. #67 Julian Childers (ILL 13.36) 6-2, 6-1
5. Alex Jesse (ILL 12.89) def. Adrian Chamdani (DU 12.90) 6-3, 6-3
6. Josh Levine (DU 12.69) def. Asher Hirsch (ILL 12.79) 7-6 (7-5), 7-6 (7-3)
Doubles competition
1. Nicolas Alvarez/Vincent Lin (DU) def. Jared Hiltzik/Alex Jesse (ILL) 6-4
2. Aron Hiltzik/Aleks Vukic (ILL) def. Josh Levine/Ryan Dickerson (DU) 6-3
3. Julian Childers/Brian Page (ILL) def. TJ Pura/Catalin Mateas (DU) 6-2
Match Notes:
Illinois 4-0; National ranking #7
Duke 1-3; National ranking #24
Order of finish: Doubles (3,1,2); Singles (4,1,5,3,6,2)
Official: Tina Chandler
T-2:36 A-309

Post match comments from Illinois's recap:
"I'm really happy for this team as they continue to search for an identity," head coach Brad Dancer said. "Anytime you go on the road and play a good team like Duke, you are going to have to find ways to win matches. Our doubles play and Jared Hiltzik and Alex Jesse put us in a position to win, but credit Duke for clawing its way back into the match, especially TJ Pura. In the end, Vukic gets a well-earned match-deciding victory, executing some of the fundamentals he has been so focused on. Again, happy for the guys and looking forward to another challenge tomorrow."

Post match comments from Duke's recap:
"That was a great college tennis match, Duke head coach Ramsey Smith said. "It came down to the last match. We had a great atmosphere with two teams playing extremely hard. We focused on all heart in singles and really digging in. I really felt like we did that on all six courts. I told the guys that if we keep that effort up that we're going to be fine.

"I was really happy with court one (doubles), Smith said. "I think that was one of the best matches they had played from start to finish.

"Vinny took out a ranked player (Childers) quickly, Smith said. "I moved him down a spot in the lineup and sometimes players don't handle that very well. He couldn't have handled it much better. His match really helped the other five guys out there get a real belief we could do it."

"I'm especially proud of Catalin, Smith added. "That guy is a gamer. He doesn't lose many matches. You have to beat him. Catalin stayed aggressive, stepped up and took the match at the end.

"I have all the confidence in the world in this team even though we're really young, Pura said. "The guys, especially the freshmen, I couldn't be more proud of. I think, if you look back at the Kentucky match to now, it's night and day the way we look. We're on the brink of making a breakthrough. We all feel it. The loss is really tough, but it's exciting. We're right there.

With an ESPN3 crowd watching on #29 Florida State cruised past #61 Alabama 6-1. Florida State swept all 3 doubles courts then picked up 3 quick straight set wins from Marco Nunez, Michael Rinaldi, and Terrance Whitehurst at 2, 4, and 6. They did play the other matches out with Florida State's Ben Lock winning a third set supertiebreak while Alabama's Becker O'Shaughnessey did the same. Below are highlights courtesy of FSU.

#29 Florida State 6, #61 Alabama 1
Jan. 29, 2016 at Tallahassee, Fla. (Scott Speicher Tennis Center) 
Singles competition
1. #15 Benjamin Lock (FS 14.16) def. #66 Mazen Osama (UA 13.51) 4-6, 6-3, 1-0 (10-5)
2. #77 Marco Nunez (FS 13.30) def. #106 Korey Lovett (UA 13.64) 6-1, 6-2
3. #123 B. O'Shaughnessey (UA 13.46) def. Aziz Dougaz (FS 13.29) 4-6, 6-3, 1-0 (11-9)
4. Michael Rinaldi (FS 13.27) def. Grayson Goldin (UA 13.39) 6-2, 6-1
5. Terrell Whitehurst (FS 13.38) def. Danny Kerznerman (UA 13.21) 7-5, 7-5
6. Terrance Whitehurst (FS 13.13) def. Spencer Richey (UA 12.93) 6-0, 6-3
Doubles competition
1. Benjamin Lock/Marco Nunez (FS) def. Korey Lovett/Mazen Osama (UA) 6-0
2. #55 Terrance Whitehurst/Terrell Whitehurst (FS) def. S Richey/Matthew Rossouw (UA) 6-4
3. Aziz Dougaz/Michael Rinaldi (FS) def. Grayson Goldin/B. O'Shaughnessey (UA) 6-4
Match Notes
Alabama 5-2; National ranking #61
Florida State 5-1; National ranking #29
Order of finish: Doubles (1,2,3); Singles (2,6,4,3,1,5)
T-2:40 A-405

Quotes from FSU's recap
Head Coach Dwayne Hultquist:
"It was a lot of fun tonight playing on ESPN3. We had a terrific crowd with the Golden Spear club seating and terrific support from the sororities on campus. Our guys love playing when we have a huge crowd like we did tonight. I was pleased with how we had three dominating matches in Marco, Terrance, and Michael. They set the stage winning the first set and closing their matches out. We'll look back on this match and see Alabama as a very good team down the road. It was a very good night for us in that we played well and we've beaten two SEC teams in a row. Those are good teams and we're building our resume. We look to build the momentum Sunday against a very good Troy team.

On Terrance Whitehurst:
"Terrance is undefeated for the spring. He's worked really hard on his game and improved his serve. His biggest thing is competing hard. He's a different player than a year ago, staying focused on his match. It's always fun because he has a good time and brings a lot of energy.

Senior Marco Nunez:
"We prepared really well for this team. Our coaches did a good job to get us focused for this match and the tactics and game plan for this match was assertive.

Quotes from Alabama's recap:
Tonight was a tale of two teams," said Alabama head coach George Husack. "One got in the way of themselves, and the other didn't. We just never got it going on all courts. It happens, and you move on. We will get better with more reps, focus and hard work."

"Becker keeps competing his tail off and leading by example," added Husack. "He didn't serve well and shot himself in the foot a few times, but he didn't cave in. A super effort."

The closest match of the day took place in Cambridge as #32 Tulane pulled out a tight, tight 4-3 win over #33 Harvard in a match where the final two courts went to a third set tiebreak to decide it. As is the case in many of these close matches the team that wins the double point seems to come out on top and this one was no exception.

Harvard's #2 team of Sebastian Beltrame and Kenny Tao won 6-2 but Tulane's #1 team of Dominik Koepfer and Chi-Shan Jao answered with a 6-3 win to bring all it all down to #2. Tulane's Sebastian Rey and Constantin Schmitz had 3 match points at #3 when Harvard's Kelvin Lam served at 5-6, 15-40 but the Crimson managed to hold to send it to a deciding tiebreak. Harvard got the early mini break to go up 1-0 but Tulane took the next 3 to go up 3-1 and ended up cruising from there to take it 7-4. As you'll see below this doubles point turned out to be pivotal.

Tulane got straight set singles wins from the ITA #1 Dominik Koepfer at #1 and Tyler Schick at #6 while Harvard's Sebastian Beltrame and Kenny Tao won in straights at #3 and #4 though Beltrame's sets were both tiebreaks. I love this clip below from Harvard's twitter talking about Kenny Tao - there is no team's twitter account that's more entertaining than Harvard's - they bring it every match so give them a follow.

With Tulane holding on to a 3-2 lead both of the final two courts would go to a third set. Harvard's Brian Yeung would get the early break at #2 to take a 3-1 lead on Tulane's Constantin Schmitz but Schmitz would break back, hold, and break again to go up 4-3. Yeung broke back and held to go up 5-4 before Schmitz held for 5-5. Each would hold one more time to send it a tiebreak and in the tiebreak it was all Schmitz as he pulled away for a 7-3 win which clinched the team victory for the Green Wave. They played out the final court and Harvard's Andy Zhou got the win 7-6(1) to make the final score 4-3 Tulane.

#32 Tulane 4, #33 Harvard 3
Jan 29, 2016 at Cambridge, Mass.
Singles competition
1. #1 Dominik Koepfer (TLN 14.34) def. #71 Nicky Hu (HU 13.72) 6-2, 6-4
2. #63 Constantin Schmitz (TLN 13.79) def. Brian Yeung (HU 13.10) 6-2, 6-7 (4), 7-6 (3)
3. Sebastian Beltrame (HU 13.12) def. Alex Van Cott (TLN 12.85) 7-6 (7), 7-6 (2)
4. Kenny Tao (HU 13.19) def. #111 Sebastian Rey (TLN 13.65) 6-4, 6-2
5. Andy Zhou (HU 13.35) def. Chi-Shan Jao (TLN 13.53) 7-6 (5), 3-6, 7-6 (1)
6. Tyler Schick (TLN 13.10) def. Grant Solomon (HU 12.61) 6-3, 6-4
Doubles competition
1. #17 Dominik Koepfer/Chi-Shan Jao (TLN) def. #44 Nicky Hu/Brian Yeung (HU) 6-3
2. #32 Sebastian Beltrame/Kenny Tao (HU) def. Alex Van Cott/Ian Van Cott (TLN) 6-2
3. Sebastian Rey/Constantin Schmitz (TLN) def. Conor Haughey/Kelvin Lam (HU) 7-6 (7-4)
Match Notes:
Tulane 4-1; National ranking #32
Harvard 3-2; National ranking #33
Order of finish: Doubles (2,1,3); Singles (1,4,6,3,2,5)

Quotes from Tulane's recap
"This was a tremendous team effort today, Tulane men's tennis head coach Mark Booras said. "Our guys really showed a lot of heart from start to finish to beat a very strong Harvard team. Hats off to Coach Fish for having top-25 caliber teams year in and year out for the last 40 years. He is one of the special coaches in our sport that has done it the right way, done it with class and produced great players, teams, and young men since well before I was competing against him in my college days. He's a true role model for us coaches.

"The way that we got it done was probably even more special because it's specifically stuff that we talked about all week after our tough loss last weekend, Booras added. "We pushed the guys to put some things into play with their mental games and then with their execution of their tactics, and they responded. Constantin showed a lot of heart today coming back from a break down in the third set to clinch it for us in a tiebreaker.

#21 Northwestern 6, #35 Notre Dame 1
Jan 29, 2016 at Evanston, Ill. (Combe Tennis Center)
Singles competition
1. #16 Konrad Zieba (NU 14.28) def. #37 Quentin Monaghan (ND 13.78) 6-2, 7-5
2. #50 Sam Shropshire (NU 13.67) def. Eddy Covalschi (ND 12.62) 6-1, 6-4
3. #55 Strong Kirchheimer (NU 14.06) def. Alex Lawson (ND 13.40) 6-3, 6-4
4. Eric Schnurrenberger (ND 12.97) def. Fedor Baev (NU 12.93) 6-3, 2-6, 6-4
5. Alp Horoz (NU 13.08) def. Josh Hagar (ND 13.26) 6-2, 5-7, 10-7
6. Ben Vandixhorn (NU 12.93) def. Grayson Broadus (ND 12.86) 6-4, 6-3
Doubles competition
1. #52 Fedor Baev/Strong Kirchheimer (NU) vs. #6 Lawson/Monaghan (ND) 4-4, unf
2. Konrad Zieba/Sam Shropshire (NU) def. Eddy Covalschi/Josh Hagar (ND) 6-2
3. Mihir Kumar/Alp Horoz (NU) def. Grayson Broadus/Eric Schnurrenberger (ND) 6-1
Match Notes:
Notre Dame 2-3; National ranking #35
Northwestern 4-1; National ranking #21
Order of finish: Doubles (3,2); Singles (2,6,3,1,5,4)
Official: John Coleman T-2:27 A-172

Last season Michigan went 1-16 against ranked opponents but so far this year they are 1-1 after a somewhat surprising 7-0 win over #34 Princeton on Friday evening at the USTA National Tennis Center. Princeton played without its #1 singles player Tom Colautti (13.40) which didn't help the Tigers but Michigan just ate them at the bottom of the lineup winning six sets 6-2 or better.

It's interesting but if you look at the Universal Tennis Ratings (UTRs) of each player you wouldn't be surprised at all by the results - in fact it would have actually been surprising had Michigan.

Michigan 7, #34 Princeton 0
Jan. 29, 2016 New York, N.Y.
Singles competition
1. Jathan Malik (UM 13.79) d. Diego Vives (PU 13.19), 7-6, 6-4
2. Davis Crocker (UM 12.69) d. #93 Alex Day (PU 12.95), 7-5, 6-7, 1-0
3. Alex Knight (UM 13.66) d. Josh Yablon (PU 12.97), 6-1, 3-6, 1-2 retired
4. Carter Lin (UM 12.83) d. Kial Kaiser (PU 12.67), 4-6, 6-1, 6-1
5. Runhao Hua (UM 13.59) d. Jimmy Wasserman (PU 12.96), 6-2, 6-2 
6. Myles Schalet (UM 13.45) d. Luke Gamble (PU 12.85), 6-2, 6-2
Doubles competition
1. Alex Knight/Runhao Hua (UM) d. Alex Day/Luke Gamble (PU), 6-4
2. Diego Vives/Jimmy Wasserman (PU) d. Davis Crocker/Gabe Tishman (UM), 6-2
3. Lubomir Cuba/Carter Lin (UM) d. Josh Yablon/Thomas Colautti (PU), 6-3
Order of finish: Doubles: 2,3,1; Singles: 6,5,1,3,4,2

Quotes from head coach Billy Pate via Princeton's recap:
"I felt we played better in certain areas tonight and once again gave ourselves a good shot to get the doubles point. It certainly wasn't as lopsided as the final score might indicate. However, we didn't capitalize on crucial points in a few of the first sets to really give ourselves the necessary momentum. Michigan is a very balanced team and it showed in their success against us down low tonight. It was clearly a bit more challenging without Tom (Colautti) at the No. 1 singles position, but Michigan played a great match regardless. We'll need a quick turnaround for a very good Iowa squad tomorrow and I'm confident we'll continue to make adjustments and improve each match."

#43 Washington picked up a nice ranked win at home over #57 Cal Poly with the Huskies winning a close doubles point before getting three quick straight set wins from Jake Douglas, Enzo Sommer, and Sebastian Hawken at 3, 4, and 5 to seal it. Each of the three remaining matches played a 10 point tiebreak in lieu of a third set.

#43 Washington 6, #57 Cal Poly 1
Jan. 29, 2016 at Seattle, WA (Nordstrom Tennis Center) 
Doubles competition
1 Donovan/Pang (CP) def. Foley/Sommer (UW) 6-4
2 Douglas/Watanabe (UW) def. (CP) Auproux/Tan (CP) 7-5
3 Lam/Stewart (UW) def. (CP) Enander/Shintani (CP) 6-3
Order of Finish: 3, 1, 2
Singles competition
1 #84 Mitch Stewart (UW) def. Garret Auproux (CP)  6-4, 2-6, 11-9
2 #122 Gal Hakak (UW) def.  Ben Donovan (CP) 4-6, 6-2, 10-8
3 #121 Jake Douglas (UW) def. Cory Pang (CP)  6-2, 6-4
4 Enzo Sommer (UW) def. Joshua Ortlip (CP)  6-2, 6-1
5 Sebastian Hawken (UW)  def. Axel Damiens (CP)  6-3, 6-2
6 Joao Barra (UW) def. Aiku Shintani (CP) 1-6, 7-5, 11-9
Order of Finish: 4, 5, 3, 1, 6, 2

Comments from Washington's recap
"I think we came out strong in doubles, said head coach Matt Anger. "At number one doubles we did lose the first game but I feel like we were right on it afterwards, that was the one game that was costly.

"I'm very happy with the win tonight, said Anger. "I think once we clinched the match we might've slowed down a little bit. But if that's our biggest complaint it's for a good reason, when you have four points on the board.

Published in Blogs
Thursday, 04 February 2016 15:13

ITA Women's National Team Indoor Preview

The second-largest team tournament in collegiate tennis behind the NCAAs is the ITA National Team Indoor event. 15 schools advanced in Kick-Off Regionals to join host Wisconsin in Madison in the prestigious event that lasts from Friday through Monday. Last year, North Carolina dropped only 2 points in its 4 matches to clinch its 2nd title in 3 years. Lots of questions come into the tournament - can UNC match its title run after two of its three stars left? Can Vanderbilt show the world that its NCAA title isn't a fluke? Will UGA turn its consistency into a national title? Will a new team emerge from Madison as a top-tier team?

Round of 16 Preview

(1)#1 Vanderbilt vs. #15 Duke
Vanderbilt got one of the worst first-round matchups in the entire tournament, playing a Duke team that won this event most recently in 2014. I honestly wouldn't be surprised to see Duke pull off the stunner. The (obvious) key to this match is doubles, which can go either way with the quicker format. In singles, Capra and Sharma are near locks for Duke and Vanderbilt, respectively. Francis Altick has had an incredible past 8 months and is considered the favorite against a tough Kaitlyn McCarthy. The match can be decided at the bottom three and the No.4 line is basically a coin flip and at No.5, Georgina Sellyn is due for a huge win in her comeback from injury.

Prediction: Vanderbilt 4-3; Both teams are so close in ability, I'm very excited to see how this one progresses. The reigning NCAA champions may have just enough confidence to squeak by in a very tight encounter.

Vanderbilt vs. Duke
1. #11 Colton/Campbell vs. #26 Capra/Hamlin
2. Sharma/Yates vs. Harris/McCarthy
3. Altick/Contreras vs. Scholl/Smith

1. #24 Sydney Campbell (11.14 UTR)  vs. #28 Beatrice Capra (11.51 UTR)
2. #15 Frances Altick (11.65 UTR) vs. #29 Kaitlyn McCarthy (11.58 UTR)
3. #33 Astra Sharma (11.25 UTR)  vs. #79 Chalena Scholl (10.58 UTR)
4. Courtney Colton (11.06 UTR) vs. Samantha Harris (10.93 UTR)
5. Georgina Sellyn (9.79 UTR) vs. #70 Ellyse Hamlin (11.26 UTR)
6. Fernanda Contreras (10.99 UTR) vs. Jessica Ho (10.27 UTR) 

(8)#16 Ohio State vs. #30 Fresno State
Both teams advanced to Madison in Regionals they traveled to, but Fresno State was the lone No.3 seed and they stunned #9 UCLA en route to victory. Ohio State went to TCU as the highest-ranked team in their Regional, but was awarded the No.2 seed. Fresno State vaulted to #30 from #54 in the latest ITA poll thanks to their win, while OSU hit a program-best #16. The Buckeyes recently traveled to Michigan and defeated their rival 4-2 indoors for an extra confidence boost. The No.1 singles match between DiLorenzo and M.Sherif Ahmed is the highlight of the entire match and the Bulldogs could sneak a surprise win at No.2 singles

Prediction: Ohio State
 4-0; The Buckeyes are on fire and running on the highest confidence and will be no match for Fresno State. OSU is extremely well-trained indoors and will snag the win before the Bulldogs can sink their teeth.

Ohio State vs. Fresno State
1. #6 Sanford/Kowase vs. Sherif Ahmed/Sherif Ahmed
2. DeSantis/Angeles Paz vs. #58 Watts/Watts
3. Sneed/DiLorenzo vs. Malysheva/Noble

1. #2 Francesca DiLorenzo (12.03 UTR) vs. #26 Maiar Sherif Ahmed (10.56 UTR)
2. Gabriella DeSantis (10.28 UTR) vs. Sophie Watts (10.17 UTR)
3. Anna Sanford (10.59 UTR) vs. Rana Sherif Ahmed (9.66 UTR)
4. Miho Kowase (10.34 UTR) vs. Galina Bykova (9.86 UTR)
5. Ferny Angeles Paz (10.53 UTR) vs. Emma Wilson (9.38 UTR)
6. Olivia Sneed (9.83 UTR) vs. Sofya Malysheva (8.45 UTR) 

(4)#6 California vs. #NR Wisconsin
California's lineup is one of the highest-quality in the country, especially with the addition of Maria Smith in January. The Bears won their rain-delayed Regional, while Wisconsin gets in as the host wildcard. Lauren Chypyha has evolved greatly as a player throughout her time in Madison, but Cal's depth is extraordinary deep compared to Wisconsin. I think the Badgers will improve from their last season or two and the experience they get by playing 3 matches against Top 20 teams will be influential in that.

Prediction: California
 4-0; Cal is on another level compared to Wisconsin and should cruise into the quarterfinals.

California vs. Wisconsin
1. #3 Manasse/Starr vs. Chypyha/Kirsch
2. #43 Fabikova/Hauger vs. Rider/Stepanova
3. Chi/Smith vs. Burich/Grambeau

1. #5 Maegan Manasse (11.63 UTR) vs. #66 Lauren Chypyha (10.65 UTR)
2. #10 Klara Fabikova (11.37 UTR) vs. Ekaterina Stepanova (9.95 UTR)
3. Lynn Chi (11.21 UTR) vs. Kendall Kirsch (9.86 UTR)
4. Denise Starr (11.19 UTR) vs. Maria Avgerinos (9.70 UTR)
5. #81 Olivia Hauger (10.99 UTR) vs. Kelsey Grambeau (9.01 UTR)
6. Karla Popovic (10.57 UTR) vs. Sydney Rider (8.98 UTR) 

(5)#7 Texas A&M vs. #9 Virginia
The biggest news of the last week was the announcement that five players from Virginia's squad were suspended for violation of team rules. It was said that players left their hotel room for a snowball fight as a winter storm approached, but there have been rumblings that things were deeper for the decision. After an upset loss to South Carolina with only 5 players, UVA inserted a lineup with everyone minus Skylar Morton and Cassie Mercer, which could've make the Cavalier lineup even stronger. Texas A&M can push Virginia, but have to cause some upsets to have a fighting chance to upset, even though they're the favorites on paper.

Prediction: Virginia
 4-1; This match is on Virginia's racquet. If the players suspended are reinstated, UVA will have enough depth to conquer the Aggies.

Texas A&M vs. Virginia
1. Pierson/Paalma vs. #19 Collins/Kelley
2. Bhosale/Mamalat vs. Elbaba/Nauta 
3. Gavrilovska/Gonzalez vs. Olivarez/Susi 

1. #53 Saska Gavrilovska (11.12 UTR) vs. #4 Danielle Collins (12.04 UTR)
2. #58 Rachel Pierson (10.81 UTR) vs. #8 Julia Elbaba (11.83 UTR)
3. #106 Rutuja Bhosale (10.72 UTR) vs. #30 Stephanie Nauta (10.88 UTR)
4. Eva Paalma (10.08 UTR) vs. Victoria Olivarez (10.04 UTR)
5. Domenica Gonzalez (10.69 UTR) vs. Maci Epstein (10.39 UTR)
6. Ines Deheza (10.65 UTR) vs. Meghan Kelley (10.20 UTR)

(3)#5 North Carolina vs. #13 Alabama

North Carolina always brings their best team for the Indoor tournament, but this will be their first big test without Jamie Loeb and Caroline Price. Alabama is a good first test for the Tar Heels, as they play strong doubles and can push in singles. 2-time reigning NCAA doubles champ Maya Jansen has been sitting out (with an injury, I presume) and not having her in the lineup works extremely well in UNC's favor. Look for Hayley Carter and Andie Daniell to have a strong tournament individually. I'm also looking at Kate Vialle, who has quietly moved up the Tar Heel lineup and contributed greatly in her time.

Prediction: North Carolina
 4-0; Looking at their lineup, I just realized how stacked North Carolina is. They have another ranked player at No.7 and then Ashley Dai at No.8. The loss of Jansen is a costly one for the Crimson Tide, but they could give some teams a freight in the backdraw.

North Carolina vs. Alabama
1. #2 Carter/Kay vs. #48 Routliffe/Daniell
2. #16 Aney/Vialle vs. Spielmann/Savva
3. Dai/Ouellet-Pizer vs. Dunn/Greene

1. #6 Hayley Carter (11.73 UTR) #vs. 63 Erin Routliffe (10.83 UTR)
2. #88 Whitney Kay (10.76 UTR) vs. #41 Andie Daniell (11.31 UTR)
3. Kate Vialle (10.54 UTR) vs. Joanna Savva (9.65 UTR)
4. #68 Jessie Aney (11.20 UTR) vs. Danielle Spielmann (10.56 UTR)
5. Marika Akkerman (10.81 UTR) vs. Natalia Maynetto (10.02 UTR)
6. #112 Chloe Ouellet-Pizer (10.58 UTR) vs. Aryn Greene (8.89 UTR)

(6)#10 Oklahoma State vs. #T-18 LSU
Chris Young's OSU Cowgirls have constantly improved every year and it's nice to see them utilize their talent into a Top 10 program. It's also nice to see Julia Sell bring the LSU Tigers back into the Top 20. She brings the No.1 recruiting class for next fall with star signing Raveena Kingsley still committed. LSU will need to capture the doubles points to and probable wins in singles at Nos. 1, 5 and 6. I don't see Lushkova and Laurente dropping their matches, while the No.2 match looks to be the tipping point. Not much separates the two teams, but OSU and their talent in the middle of the lineup is a hair stronger.

Prediction: Oklahoma State
 4-1; OSU is incredibly consistent throughout their lineup with possibly their No.6 spot a "weakness." LSU will grit out a point (or two), but the Cowgirls will march on in a close encounter.

Oklahoma State vs. LSU
1. #27 Katarina Adamovic (10.60 UTR) vs. #23 Joana Vale Costa (11.20 UTR)
2. #38 Vladica Babic (10.94 UTR) vs. #52 Jessica Golovin (10.93 UTR)
3. #46 Viktoriya Lushkova (10.69 UTR) vs. #93 Skylar Kuykendall (10.59 UTR)
4. #89 Kelsey Laurente (10.73 UTR) vs. Ryann Foster (10.30 UTR)
5. Katarina Stresnakova (10.60 UTR) vs. Abby Owens (10.66 UTR)
6. Carla Tur Mari (10.24 UTR) vs. Ella Taylor (10.39 UTR)

1. #9 Laurente/Alavarez vs. Vale Costa/Foster
2. #23 Lushkova/Tur Mari vs. Kuykendall/Owens
3. Adamovic/Babic vs. Holloway/Taylor

(7)#11 Miami vs. #12 Michigan
If I were a betting man, I'd put good money down that this could be one of the longer matches of this first round. Miami's team is full of claycourt-style players who will outgrind and extend rallies to debilitate their opponents. Unfortunately, they play a Michigan team who plays indoors nearly year-round. It's a nice matchup for both teams and I wouldn't be surprised to see a few of my picks turn out to favor the other side. This is another match where the doubles point is crucial and will affect the winner of this match.

Prediction: Miami 
4-3; The 1-2 duo of Lohan and Wagner are too strong this year and they will power the Hurricanes into the quarterfinals

Miami vs. Michigan
1. #7 Sinead Lohan (11.86 UTR) vs. #17 Ronit Yurovsky (11.24 UTR)
2. #9 Stephanie Wagner (11.71 UTR) vs. #19 Brienne Minor (11.37 UTR)
3. Clementina Riobueno (10.60 UTR) vs. #107 Kate Fahey (10.96 UTR)
4. #80 Wendy Zhang (10.82 UTR) vs. Mira Ruder-Hook (10.04 UTR)
5. Clara Taniellian (10.15 UTR) vs. Alex Najarian (10.42 UTR)
6. Ana Madcur (10.39 UTR) vs. Sara Remynse (9.92 UTR)

1. Wagner/Zhang vs. Ruder-Hook/Minor
2. Lohan/Madcur vs. Yurovsky/Fahey
3. Fuentes/Riobueno vs. Remynse/Najarian

(2)#2 Georgia vs. #17 Texas Tech
Although they're a championship-calibre team from the South, UGA is a strong indoor squad. As the 8th seed last year, they battled their way to a tight runner-up finish. I'm very impressed with the year Ellen Perez has had, as well as the strong rise of Caroline Brinson. While they proud a solid Top 2 for the Dawgs, I think the key for a big run sits on Silvia Garcia. The Spaniard has had such a great career in Athens, but last year hit a down point at the NTI, going winless in singles. Alex Valenstein could grab a W for Texas Tech at No.5, but I'm having trouble finding two other points for the Red Raiders to score the upset. Should UGA remain healthy and armor themselves with the right mindset, they have a very strong chance to return to the NTI final.

Prediction: Georgia 
4-0; Georgia's consistency guides them to many Final Fours and other deep runs and they'll be too strong for the Red Raiders.

Georgia vs. Texas Tech
1. #12 Ellen Perez (11.61 UTR) vs. #77 Gabriela Talaba (11.09 UTR)
2. #22 Caroline Brinson (11.26 UTR) vs. Lynn Kiro (10.50 UTR)
3. #82 Silvia Garcia (10.98 UTR) vs. Sarah Dvorak (10.86 UTR)
4. #109 Kennedy Shaffer (11.23 UTR) vs. Sabrina Federici (10.55 UTR)
5. Mariana Gould (10.46 UTR) vs. Alex Valenstein (10.28 UTR)
6. Laura Patterson (9.79 UTR) vs. Felicity Maltby (10.81 UTR)

1. #14 Perez/Gould vs. Kiro/Talaba
2. Garcia/Brinson vs. Dvorak/Valenstein
3. Patterson/Shaffer vs. Federici/Maltby

You can visit Wisconsin's home page for the National Team Indoors here.

Published in Blogs
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