Baylor Men Down Tennessee, 4-1

 Bears advance to the NCAA Championship quarterfinals for seventh time in program history.
TULSA, Okla. – Baylor’s ninth-seeded men’s tennis team posted an impressive 4-1, victory over eighth-seeded Tennessee to advance to the NCAA Championship quarterfinals for the seventh time in program history. The event, hosted by the University of Tulsa, is held at the university’s Michael D. Case Tennis Center.

In a contest befitting an eight-nine seed match-up, doubles were a war. All three matches went to tiebreakers and finished within minutes of each other.

On court one, Denes Lukacs and David Galic broke out to a 5-2 lead over Tennessee’s fourth-ranked tandem of Kaden Hensel and J.P. Smith. The Vol duo won the next three games to even the score. Each player held serve the rest of the way. In the tiebreaker, Tennessee leapt out to a 4-1 lead and held on to win 7-4.

Baylor evened the match shortly thereafter when Lars Poerschke and Attila Bucko posted a 7-3 tiebreak win on court two over Davey Sandgren and Jeremy Tweedt.

Approximately 30 seconds after Poerschke and Bucko’s victory, UT’s Boris Conkic and Matteo Fago downed Dominik Mueller and Jordan Rux, 9-8 (2), on court three to secure the doubles point for the Vols.

The Bears won three singles points in straight-sets with Mueller posting a dominating win (6-0, 6-1) over Sandgren on court four. With the victory, Mueller extended his team-best dual match record to 27-4, including a 13-2 mark at No. 4, and is now 36-9 on the season. Next off the court for the Bears was eighth-ranked Poerschke who breezed past No. 35 Hensel, 6-1, 6-2. Lukacs, ranked No. 9, disposed of the 24th-ranked Smith at No. 2, 6-2, 6-3. The victory extended Lukacs’ win streak to 13 matches and raised his team-best season record to 43-9.
Baylor’s fourth point was a little harder to come by. After posting three points, three matches were still on the court with no clear-cut victories in sight. Bucko on court five, Rux on court six and Galic on court three all lost their first sets but Bucko and Rux each rallied to win their second set. In the third set, Bucko’s serve got broken in game four by Fago to even the set at 2-2. Each player held serve until Bucko broke back to go up 5-4. Bucko then held serve in the final game to post a 6-4 win and clinch the match for the Bears.

The Bears, now 25-8 on the season, will be making their sixth straight quarterfinal appearance when they face top-seeded and undefeated Virginia (31-0) on Sunday, May 18 at 12:00 p.m. The Cavaliers advanced with a 4-0 over 16th-seeded Michigan.

NCAA Championships
Round of 16
May 16, 2008 at Tulsa, Okla.
Michael D. Case Tennis Center
#9 Baylor 4, #8 Tennessee 1

1. #8 Lars Poerschke (BU) def. #35 Kaden Hensel (TENN) 6-1, 6-2
2. #9 Denes Lukacs (BU) def. #24 J.P. Smith (TENN) 6-2, 6-3
3. David Galic (BU) vs. #93 Boris Conkic (TENN) DNF
4. #79 Dominik Mueller (BU) def. Davey Sandgren (TENN) 6-0, 6-1
5. Attila Bucko (BU) def. Matteo Fago (TENN) 3-6, 6-3, 6-4
6. Jordan Rux (BU) vs. Jeremy Tweedt (TENN) DNF

1. #4 Hensel/Smith (TENN) def. Galic/Lukacs (BU) 9-8 (7-4)
2. Bucko/Poerschke (BU) def. Sandgren/Tweedt (TENN) 9-8 (7-3)
3. Conkic/Fago (TENN) def. Mueller/Rux (BU) 9-8 (7-2)

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

UT Tyler Men Fall at DIII NCAA Individuals

LEWISTON, Maine – Junior Dustin Phillips (Houston, Texas) fell in his NCAA Division III National Singles Tournament debut to John James of Mary Washington in a tie-break heartbreaker, 1-6, 7-6, 7-6.

Later in the day, Phillips paired with sophomore David Ashlock (Arlington, Texas) to compete in the NCAA National Doubles Tournament.  For the second time this season, the duo fell to Andy Bryan and Charlie Paukert of Gustavus Adolphus, 6-2, 6-3. 

In singles action, Phillips was able to take the first set over James by the score of 6-1.  However in the next two sets, James would take Phillips to a tie-break scenario where he would win each time to take the match.

In the doubles bracket, Phillips and Ashlock were looking for a measure of revenge as they fell to Bryan and Paukert in the 3rd Round of the NCAA team Championships a little under two weeks ago in Minnesota.  However, the end result would be the same as Phillips and Ashlock fell in straight sets. 

Despite their quick exits from the tournament, Phillips and Ashlock have both earned the distinction of being the first-ever Patriot tennis players, men or women, to compete in the National Individual Championships.

Texas Men Blank Florida

No. 7 Texas Blanks No. 9 Florida, 4-0, Advances to NCAA Quarterfinals

Longhorns advance to NCAA quarterfinals for second time in three seasons, as Texas posts a 4-0 victory over No. 9 Florida Friday afternoon at Tulsa’s Michael D. Case Tennis Center.

TULSA, Okla. – No. 7 Texas (23-5) came out aggressively in doubles play and maintained its intensity throughout the singles session, as the Longhorns posted a decisive 4-0 victory over No. 9 Florida (17-8) Friday in the round of 16 at the NCAA Men’s Tennis Championship.  Texas advances to the NCAA quarterfinals for the second time in three seasons and will meet either second-seeded Ohio State or 15th-seeded Illinois on Sunday, May 18 at 4 p.m. Central.

Texas asserted itself early on in doubles play to take the doubles point and assume a 1-0 lead.  Senior Luis Diaz Barriga and junior Miguel Reyes Varela held off the Gators’ Nestor Briceno and Alex Lacroix at the second slot, 8-6, and freshmen Ed Corrie and Kellen Damico finished off Jeff Dadamo and Greg Ouellette at first doubles, 8-4.  Sophomores Dimitar Kutrovsky and Josh Zavala held a 7-4 lead at the third slot before the match was called.

Corrie pushed the Texas lead to 2-0 with an easy 6-2, 6-2 win at third singles over the Gators’ Lacroix.  Reyes Varela took the first set off of Florida’s Johnny Hamui at sixth singles, 6-4, and broke Hamui late in the second set to emerge with a 6-4, 7-5 win to push the Longhorns’ lead to 3-0.

Diaz Barriga and Florida’s Dadamo engaged in a lengthy battle at fourth singles, where Diaz Barriga took the first set, 6-2.  Dadamo broke Diaz Barriga’s serve early in the second set and took the set, 6-3, but Diaz Barriga proved to be too much in the end, as he clinched his match shortly after Reyes Varela had done the same.

Diaz Barriga finished off Dadamo, 6-2, 3-6, 6-3 to clinch the match for Texas and send the Horns into the NCAA quarterfinals.  The remaining three matches were called given that the Longhorns had secured the team victory.  

NCAA Men’s Tennis Championship – Round of 16
Michael D. Case Tennis Center – Tulsa, Okla.
No. 7 Texas 4, No. 9 Florida 0
Doubles – Order of Finish:  2, 1
1 No. 9 Corrie/Damico (UT) def. No. 30 Dadamo/Ouellette (UF) – 8-4
2 No. 53 Diaz Barriga/Reyes Varela (UT) def. Briceno/Lacroix (UF) – 8-6
3 Kutrovsky/Zavala (UT) vs. Barton/Hochwalt (UF) – 7-4, susp.

Singles – Order of Finish:  3, 6, 4
1 No. 10 Dimitar Kutrovsky (UT) vs. No. 2 Greg Ouellette (UF) – 4-6, 7-5, susp.
2 No. 41 Kellen Damico (UT) vs. No. 52 Nestor Briceno (UF) – 6-3, 3-6, 2-1, susp.
3 No. 47 Ed Corrie (UT) def. No. 66 Alex Lacroix (UF) – 6-2, 6-2
4 Luis Diaz Barriga (UT) def. Jeff Dadamo (UF) – 6-2, 3-6, 3-6
5 Milan Mihailovic (UT) vs. Tyler Hochwalt (UF) – 6-4, 3-6, 1-0, susp.
6 Miguel Reyes Varela (UT) def. Johnny Hamui (UF) – 6-4, 7-5

Wooten Wins Double Future

This may not be college news exactly, but he is a born and bred Texan and it came down from the A&M SID office…

Former Texas A&M men’s tennis player Bryan Wooten recently won his first professional doubles event at the 2008 F6 Futures Tournament held on May 5-11 in Celaya, Mexico.

Wooten and fellow American Ikaika Jobe, who previously played at Boise State, defeated Cuba’s Rafael Arevalo and Sandor Martinez-Breijo, 6-3, 6-7 (8), 6-6 (retired), in the finals of the hard-court tournament. The duo advanced with a 2-6, 6-3 (10-7) victory over New Zealand’s G.D. Jones and American Nima Roshan in the semifinals.

An Aggie letterwinner from 2004-07 and a Big 12 Conference No. 3 doubles champion as a senior, Wooten has compiled a career 5-1 record with Jobe beating teams from the U.S., Japan and Mexico this summer on the ITF Men’s Circuit.

Defending Champs Eliminate Texas Women, 4-2

No. 3 Georgia Tech Eliminates No. 19 Texas from NCAA Championship, 4-2

Longhorns take a 2-0 lead after winning the doubles point and getting a straight-set win from sophomore Sarah Lancaster, but defending NCAA champion Georgia Tech rallies with four singles to advance to the NCAA quarterfinals with a 4-2 win over the Longhorns. 

TULSA, Okla. – No. 19 Texas collected the doubles point and a straight-set singles win from sophomore Sarah Lancaster, but it wasn’t enough Thursday evening, as No. 3 Georgia Tech (22-5) dealt the Longhorns a 4-2 defeat in the NCAA Championship round of 16 at Tulsa’s Michael D. Case Tennis Center.  Texas’ season ends in the round of 16 at 20-7.

Texas opened the match by taking a hard-fought doubles session to assume a 1-0 lead.  Junior Marija Milic and sophomore Vanja Corovic opened authoritatively at first doubles, pounding Sasha Krupina and Kristi Miller by an 8-2 count.  The Yellow Jackets’ Kirsten Flower and Christy Striplin held off Texas’ Maggie Mello and Courtney Zauft at third doubles, 8-6, leaving the doubles point to be decided at the second position.

Texas’ Stephanie Davison and Caroline Larsson held a 5-2 lead at second doubles only to see Georgia Tech’s Noelle Hickey and Whitney McCray even the tally at five.  However, Texas broke Georgia Tech’s service in two of the remaining three games, as Davison and Larsson posted an 8-6 victory to clinch the doubles point for the Longhorns.

Sophomore Sarah Lancaster put the Horns up 2-0 after rallying from a 3-0 second-set deficit.  Lancaster took the first set, 6-1 before pulling away to take the second, 6-3.

Georgia Tech cut the deficit in half, as the Yellow Jackets’ Christy Striplin posted a 6-3, 6-2 win over Caroline Larsson at fourth singles, and Tech evened the tally at two when Miller topped UT’s Corovic at first singles, 6-3, 6-4.

Georgia Tech assumed a 3-2 lead when Amanda McDowell outlasted Zauft at second singles, 6-2, 6-4, and the Yellow Jackets sealed the victory when Flower topped Mello at fifth singles, 6-4, 6-4.

Texas’ Davison held a 3-1 third-set lead over Tech’s McCray before the match was suspended after the Yellow Jackets registered the clinching point. 

Texas coach Patty Fendick-McCain
“I’m proud of our fight tonight.  We’ve been getting stronger and stronger as the season has progressed.  The thing that we’re happy to walk away with is that now we have some seasoned veterans on a pretty young team who gave Georgia Tech, the defending NCAA title holder, a fight for its life at the NCAA Championship.  I’m really looking forward to next year.  Sarah Lancaster played fantastic tonight, and I think Stephanie Davison was going to get one (a win) in the books tonight.  We just needed one more, and we couldn’t quite get one more.  They left everything they had out there today.”

On the victory in the doubles session:
“We have been playing very well at No. 1 doubles, very solid….they’ve just been destroying everyone lately.  We haven’t known which team out of Nos. 2 and 3 doubles would have a great day, but it has been fun to watch them all.  We never feel like we’re out of it in the doubles matches.  We had it really amped up in doubles.  This is a tough Longhorn team, and I think Georgia Tech is pretty happy to have escaped that match.” 
NCAA Women’s Tennis Championship – Round of 16
No. 3 Georgia Tech 4, No. 19 Texas 2
Doubles – Order of Finish:  1, 3, 2
1 Corovic/Milic (UT) def. Krupina/Miller (GT) – 8-2
2 Davison/Larsson (UT) def. Hickey/McCray (GT) – 8-6
3 Flower/Striplin (GT) def. Mello/Zauft (UT) – 8-6
Singles – Order of Finish:  6, 4, 1, 2, 5
1 Kristi Miller (GT) def. Vanja Corovic (UT) – 6-3, 6-4
2 Amanda McDowell (GT) def. Courtney Zauft (UT) – 6-2, 6-4
3 Stephanie Davison (UT) vs. Whitney McCray (GT)  – 4-6, 6-2, 3-1, susp.
4 Christy Striplin (GT) def. Caroline Larsson (UT) – 6-3, 6-2
5 Kirsten Flower (GT) def. Maggie Mello (UT) – 6-4, 6-4
6 Sarah Lancaster (UT) def. Noelle Hickey (GT)  – 6-1, 6-3

Arizona State Cuts Men’s Tennis

It has nothing to do with Texas, but the fact that Arizona State cut their Men’s program today, less than a week after making the NCAA Tournament is a sad day. The Sun Devil Men had a great year, finishing #23 in the country at 15-5 and a first round loss to Duke.

Here’s the link to the school’s official release,

That team had one senior and one junior, the rest were sophomores and freshmen. And how about coach Lou Belken? In his 26th year, and oh by the way, you contract is up in November. Wow.


Third Time’s a Charm

Ok, the third time is a charm. I have finally got a hold of the official NCAA program that lists all of the teams and their rosters. I can now list all of the Texans (and those others listed as Texans) that are playing in the NCAA D-I Tournament.

To be honest, I don’t feel real bad because the way the NCAA sets up the regionals, it was next to impossible to get reliable results without wasting a ton of time. Note to self, get the links to the regional sites and provide a central location for people to find them.

Alright, here we go. I am not going to debate whether some of these guys ever saw the court all season or whether some are really from Texas. I am just going by who is listed on their rosters.

Hunter Mills, Auburn (San Antonio)
Jordan Rux, Baylor (Waco)
Brent Werbeck, Boise State (Austin)
Chris Klepatz, Cleveland State (San Antonio)
Aaron Carpenter, Duke (Houston)
David Lue, Dike (Houston)
Christopher Price, Duke (Houston)
Jamie Hunt, Georgia (San Antonio)
Alexi Chijoff-Evans, Harvard (Plano)
Sasha Ermakov, Harvard (Dallas)
Ashwin Kumar, Harvard (Round Rock)
Brandon Davis, Illinois (Austin)
Santiago Montoya, Notre Dame (Austin)
Andrew Roth, Notre Dame (Houston)
Adam Slagter, Penn State (Austin)
Stuart Keplar, Pepperdine (Dallas)
Dennis Polyakov, Rice (Houston)
Hooney Shin, Rice (Katy)
Chong Wang, Rice (Houston)
Adham el-Effendi, SMU (Dallas)
Hubert Chodkiewicz, Texas (Corpus Christi)
Rook Schellenberg, Texas (Dallas)
Jon Wiegand, Texas (San Antonio)
Josh Zavala, Texas (Amarillo)
Caleb Bulls, TCU (Tyler)
Zach Nichols, TCU (Austin)
Casey Powers, TCU (Dallas)
Jack Seider, TCU (Austin)
Joe Hattrup, Texas Tech (Plano)
James Wilson, Texas Tech (Austin)
Jay Wofford, Texas Tech (Lubbock)
Andy Pulido, Vanderbilt (Texarkana)
Jessica Leitch, Arizona State (Dallas)
Diana Alquero, Army (Sugar Land)
Christine Limsiaco, Army (The Woodlands)
Natalie Holmes, Baylor (Corsicana)
Jen Wencel, Boise State (Austin)
Stephanie Kusano, Cal (Houston)
Ashley Joelson, UCLA (Austin)
Megan Alexander, Florida (Dallas)
Jessica Wente, Florida State (Whitehouse)
Lauren Osborne, Furman (Dallas)
Salina Aranda, Lamar (Kirbyville)
Tiffany Tucker, LSU (Fort Worth)
Emily Zampello, Marist (Kingwood)
Sanaz Marand, North Carolina (Katy)
Lauren Lui, Northwestern (Houston)
Kristen Rafael, Notre Dame (Grand Prairie)
Paloma Escobido, Ohio State (Houston)
Julie Voss, Ohio State (San Angelo)
Hayden Rush, Oral Roberts (Amarillo)
Whitney Deason, Stanford (Houston)
Isamarie Perez, Stanford (San Antonio)
Rosalia Alda, Tennessee (Round Rock)
Sarah Lancaster, Texas (San Antonio)
Abby Lui, Texas (Houston)
Courtney Zauft, Texas (San Antonio)
Christina Amo, Texas A&M (Fort Worth)
Stephanie Davidson, Texas A&M (Fair Oaks Ranch)
Marisa Druss, Texas A&M (Austin)
Andrea Morgado, TCU (Plano)
Nina Munch-Soegaard, TCU (Amarillo)
Kewa Nichols, TCU (Austin)
Rebecca Row, Tulsa (Lubbock)
Lillian Nguyen, Yale (Austin)

Tyler, Lee Women Fall Short at National JuCo Championships

Tyler Junior College finiashed second and Lee Collee, third, at the 2008 Division I Junior College National Championships held at the Randolph Tennis Center in Tucson, Arizona. The Apaches had their chances on the final day, but Priscillia Villemond fell in the Flight #2 final, while Sureena Weir fell at #4, giving Hillsborough Community College the victory. 

For complete results try the tennis link page, click here

Division I Team Standings – Day 5 (May 8th, 2008)
1. Hillsborough Community College (Tampa, FL) – 45 NATIONAL CHAMPION
2. Tyler Junior College (Tyler, TX) – 44
3. Lee College (Baytown, TX) – 43
4. Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College (Tifton, GA) – 42
5. Collin County Community College (Plano, TX) – 39.5
6. North Central Texas College (Gainesville, TX) – 38
7. Laredo Community College (Laredo, TX) – 37
8. Florida Community College (Jacksonville, FL) – 31
9. Barton County Community College (Great Bend, KS) – 29
10. Meridian Community College (Meridian, MS) – 27.5
11. Seminole State College Oklahoma (Seminole, OK) – 27
12. Kalamazoo Valley Community College (Kalamazoo Valley, MI) – 26
13. Central Florida Community College (Ocala, FL) – 23
14. Eastern Arizona College (Thatcher, AZ) – 21.5
14. Johnson County Community College (Overland Park, KS) – 21.5
16. Seward County Community College (Liberal, KS) – 18
17. Grand Rapids Community College (Grand Rapids, MI) – 17.5
18. Glendale Community College (Glendale, AZ) – 17
19. Temple College (Temple, TX) – 15.5
20. Cowley County Community College (Arkansas City, KS) – 14
20. Mississippi Gulfcoast Community College (Gulfport, MS) – 14
22. Central Alabama Community College (Alexander City, AL) – 13
23. Jones County Junior College (Ellisville, MS) – 12
23. University of Arkansas – FS (Fort Smith, AR) – 12
23. Muskegon Community College (Muskegon, MI) – 12
26. Snead State Community College (Boaz, AL) – 11
27. Scottsdale Community College (Scottsdale, AZ) – 10.5
28. Broward Community College (Davie, FL) – 9
28. Hagerstown Community College (Hagerstown, MD) – 9
30. Waubonsee Community College (Sugar Grove, IL) – 6
31. Cecil Community College (North East, MD) – 5
32. Pima Community College (Tucson, AZ) – 4
33. Moraine Valley Community College (Palos Hills, IL) – 3.5
34. Lewis & Clark Community College (Godfrey, IL) – 3
35. Elgin Community College (Elgin, IL) – 0
35. Sauk Valley Community College (Dixon, IL) – 0

Division III Team Standings – Day 4 (May 7th, 2008)
1. College of DuPage (Glen Ellyn, IL) – 41 NATIONAL CHAMPION
2. Ocean County College (Toms River, NJ) – 22 RUNNER-UP
3. Rock Valley College (Rockford, IL) – 19
4. Oxford College (Oxford, GA) – 18.5
4. Brookdale Community College (Lincroft, NJ) – 18.5
6. Broome Community College (Binghamton, NY) – 15.5
7. Fashion Institute of Technology (New York, NY) – 11.5
8. Eastfield College (Mesquite, TX) – 8
9. Gloucester County College (Sewell, NJ) – 7
10. Harford Community College (Bel Air, MD) – 6.5
11. Northeast Community College (Booneville, MS) – 2
12. Community College of Rhode Island (Warwick, RI) – 0

Two Tyler JuCo Players Honored

ITA announces national award winners for Junior and Community College tennis
The Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) has announced its 2008 national award winners for Junior and Community College men’s and women’s tennis.

Ashley Irvin and Dominic McLuskey of Tyler Junior College were recognized by the ITA for their outstanding seasons. Irvin was named ITA Women’s Player fo the Year. McLuskey was named ITA National Rookie of the Year for junior colleges.

Highlighting this year’s awards are the Wilson/ITA National Coaches of the Year: Ron Albers of Vincennes University (men) and Mike Napoli of Cuesta College (women)
Also honored in women’s tennis were:
ITA National Player of the Year – Ashley Irvin, Tyler Junior College
ITA National Rookie Player – Monica Lalewicz, Abraham Baldwin College
ITA National Player to Watch – Eva Sambrano, Hillsborough Community College
ITA/Arthur Ashe Jr. Award for Leadership and Sportsmanship – Natalie Kelley, Santa Monica College
The men’s award winners are:
ITA National Player of the Year – Paul Fitzgerald, Abraham Baldwin College
ITA National Rookie Player – Dominic McLuskey, Tyler Junior College
ITA National Player to Watch – Christopher King, Vincennes University
ITA/Arthur Ashe Jr. Award for Leadership and Sportsmanship- William Blake Sherman, Meridian Community College

Napoli has been a head coach for 20 years, accumulating a 241-91-1 overall record. This year, he led the Cuesta College women’s tennis team in an undefeated season, after the team went 3-11 in 2007. He has guided Cuesta College to nine Western State Conference Championships.

Albers, who also won the Wilson/ITA Coach of the Year award in 1999, led the Vincennes University men’s tennis team to a 27-4 season and a top-5 finish in the national rankings.

Earlier this month, Grossmont College captured the women’s California Community College Athletic Association team championship by beating Chabot College 5-3, while Ventura College captured the men’s title, beating Fresno City College 5-2.

At the NJCAA women’s tennis championships this week, Hillsborough Community College (Fla.) captured the Division I title, while the College of DuPage (Ill.) won the Division III title.  (There is not a Division II championship).

The men’s NJCAA Championships will be held May 11-16 at Collin County Community College in Plano, Texas.

As the governing body of collegiate tennis the Intercollegiate Tennis Association ( ITA) promotes both the athletic and academic achievements of the collegiate tennis community. The ITA, which was founded in 1956 and is based in Skillman, N.J., administers numerous regional and national championships, the ITA Collegiate Summer Circuit presented by the USTA, and the Fila Collegiate Tennis Rankings for Men’s and Women’s tennis at the NCAA Divisions I, II and III, NAIA and Junior College levels. The ITA also has a comprehensive awards program for players and coaches to honor excellence in academics, leadership and sportsmanship.

Tech Men Fall Short in Ann Arbor

In what proved to be an intense match from start to finish, the Texas Tech men’s tennis team came up short to find the win they needed to push them past host No. 16 Michigan today in the second round of the NCAA Championships. Michigan (20-6) will advance to the Sweet 16 to play No. 1 Virginia in Tulsa, Okla., the first time for UM since 1988. The Red Raiders ended its impressive 2008 season run ranked No. 17 nationally with a 20-6 duals record.

The Red Raiders faced a number of setbacks early on as the match was played indoors at the prestigious Varsity Tennis Center due to rain, only the second match the Red Raiders have played indoors this season. Also, Tech was again forced to play without its No. 2 doubles and No. 6 singles standout Michael Breler due to illness.

The Wolverines began the match strong taking the doubles point right off the bat. Michigan’s No. 38-ranked pair of Jason Jung and Mike Sroczynski dominated Milos Kustudija and Sinisa Markovic at No. 2, winning 8-1. Meanwhile, with the home crowd behind them UM’s Chris Madden and George Navas broke Tech’s Lenoir Ramos to take the 5-3 lead on court three. Tech continued to struggle to find a break at the No. 1 and 3 positions, as Ramos and Ilya Babinciuc dropped the doubles point to Madden and Navas, 8-5.

The battle for the Red Raiders continued into singles as Tech senior Babinciuc rallied after losing the first set 6-2 to UM’s Sroczynski to take a 5-1 lead in the second on court four. Babinciuc couldn’t quite find the final point to take the match to a third set, as Sroczynski battled back and won the next six points to give the Wolverines its first singles win. Junior Christian Rojmar was the first to put the Raiders on the scoreboard as he got a much-needed win for his team at No. 5, taking Madden in straight sets. Michigan’s Navas quickly responded with a win over Kustudija on court six, but Tech’s No. 2 ace Markovic stepped up big for his team again. Markovic edged UM’s Jung in the first set tiebreaker, 7-5, and was able to break Jung late in the second to serve up the 6-4 win to give the Red Raiders its second point.
With the score at 3-2 in favor of Michigan, the last two matches were on courts one and three where both had moved into a third set. Senior Bojan Szumanski won the first set 7-3 in the tiebreaker, but the Wolverine senior Matko Maravic answered with a 6-3 win in the second. Meanwhile, Andrew Mazlin (UM) had the 6-3 win in the first set at No. 3, but senior Ramos (TTU) refused to give up taking the second set tiebreaker, 7-1. In the fight for a third set victory, Tech’s hopes of a Sweet 16 berth were halted as Mazlin pushed past Ramos winning 6-3 to advance his team to the next round of the NCAA Championships.

“It was definitely a great college tennis match. I thought the guys handled playing indoors for only the second time this season and the Michigan home crowd really well, and I’m proud of them because they fought hard to the very end. They played well not only for me, but for our fans and the university,” said head coach Tim Siegel. “Unfortunately, Michigan just played a little bit better in the end and I wish them the best of luck in Tulsa.”

This was also the last match for seniors Babinciuc and Szumanski. Babinciuc ended his Red Raider campaign with a solid 26-18 singles record, placing him second in Tech’s record book for single season victories with 26 behind teammate Breler. Szumanski is one of the most decorated players college tennis players to date, and will go down as Tech’s all-time winningest singles and doubles player with a 90-47 career singles and 61-43 career doubles record.

“It kind of hit me after we lost that this was my last match with my team. I was disappointed with my play today, and wish I could have gotten a win in singles to help shift the momentum for my team,” reflected Szumanski after the match. “I am very proud of my team and the way they fought on the court, and also the guys who cheered for us in the stands today. My team and the atmosphere the guys created is definitely what I’m going to miss the most!”

Szumanski is currently ranked No. 33 in singles and has been nationally ranked for three straight seasons, two within the ITA’s top 25. He is also ranked No. 13 with Rojmar playing No. 1 doubles the past two seasons. He is a three-time All-Big 12 singles honoree, two-time All-Big 12 doubles with Rojmar, three-time Academic All-Big 12, 2005 Academic All-American, and two-time first team Academic All-District VI. Also, he is the only player in program history to have participated in the NCAA Team Championships three times.

“It has been a great experience. Every team I’ve gone to the NCAA Championships with was different and special in their own way. This year, I definitely felt we had what it took to take it to the next level. Getting to tournament is a good accomplishment, but to get to the Sweet 16 is really special, and I really wanted it this year not only for myself, but for the guys on the team as well.”

Despite the shortfall for the Red Raiders, head coach Siegel feels losing Szumanski next season is a much bigger loss as he believes he is undoubtedly one of the premier college tennis players in the nation to come out of Texas Tech.

“Bojan has meant more to this program than anyone in history of Texas Tech,” said Siegel. “He has helped bring Texas Tech tennis to another level, and I will always appreciate what he has done for his teammates, for me as a coach, and for the university.”

Although he played his last match at No. 1 for his team, Szumanski will continue to compete in the 2008 NCAA Singles and Doubles Championships with teammate Rojmar in Tulsa beginning May 21.

#16 Michigan 4, #17 Texas Tech 2
Varsity Tennis Center
Ann Arbor, Mich.
NCAA Championships-Second Round
Doubles: 2, 3*
1. #13 Rojmar/Szumanski (TTU) vs. Maravic/Mazlin (UM); 5-3
2. #38 Jung/Sroczynski (UM) def. Kustudija/Markovic (TTU); 8-1
3. Madden/Navas (UM) def. Babinciuc/Ramos (TTU); 8-5

Singles: 4, 5, 6, 2, 3*
1. #33 Bojan Szumanski (TTU) vs. #64 Matko Maravic (UM); 7-6(3), 3-6, 2-5
2. #119 Sinisa Markovic (TTU) def. Jason Jung (UM); 7-6(5), 6-4
3. Andrew Mazlin (UM) def. Lenoir Ramos (TTU); 6-3, 6-7(1), 6-3
4. Mike Sroczynski (UM) def. Ilya Babinciuc (TTU); 6-2, 7-5
5. Christian Rojmar (TTU) def. Chris Madden (UM); 6-4, 6-3
6. George Navas (UM) def. Milos Kustudija (TTU); 6-4, 6-4