UTEP Comes Up Shy At New Mexico, 6-1

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.- The UTEP tennis team was tripped up by New Mexico, 6-1, on the road Saturday afternoon. The Miners (0-3) went back-and-forth with the Lobos (2-1) in doubles action, picking up a triumph at No. 3 but could not secure the team point. Freshman Rebeca Calvillo tasted victory at No. 5 singles but the Orange and Blue came up shy on the other courts.

“The ladies fought hard,” UTEP head coach Victor Aguilar said. “We just have to work harder in practice and step it up next time out.”

The match opened up with all the focus on doubles play. The Miners looked solid early on with their pairing of Marie LeBlond/Calvillo cruising past UNM’s representatives, Kristin Eggleston/Laura Richardson, 8-5, at No. 3.

It was also a tightly-contested match at No. 1, but this one went the way of the Lobos. The homestanding duo of Ashley Bonner/Anya Villanueva prevailed against UTEP’s top tandem of Martina Trierweiler/Carolina DeLuca, 8-6.

Ximena Fuentes/Gabi Vazquez locked up against Michaela Bezdickova/Nikolina Grbac in No. 2, and the duo was derailed by a final count of 8-2.

Action then switched to singles play, where the Miners would need to claim four of the six contests in order to secure the come-from-behind team triumph. That scenario did not come to fruition, though, despite the play of Calvillo.

She did her part against Richardson, and in thrilling fashion. She dropped the first set, 6-4, but rallied to stake the second set, 6-0. With the team outcome already having been decided due to results on other courts, a super tie breaker was utilized in place of the third set. Calvillo handled the format change with ease, en route to a 10-8 triumph.

Vazquez squared off against Eggleston at No. 3 singles, and she got off to a good start by staking the first set, 6-1. Her foe struck back to the tune 7-6 in the second stanza. In a super tiebreaker Vazquez fought hard only to be bounced, 10-5.

At No. 1 singles Trierweiler pushed Bezdickova to her limits in the first set but ultimately dropped it, 6-4. She wasn’t able to keep things as close in the second and final set, falling 6-1.

DeLuca could not find her rhythm against Grbac at No. 2 singles, with the final score checking in at 6-2, 6-1, in favor of UNM. Glebova was saddled with a comparable fate at No. 4 singles. She was sent packing by Villanueva, 6-2, 6-2.

Fuentes battled Michaela Oldani at No. 6 singles. The senior was doubled up, 6-3, in the first set. She regrouped to play better in the second stanza but it wasn’t quite enough in the 7-6 defeat.

Singles competition
1. Michaela Bezdickova (UNM) def. Martina Trierweiler (UTEP) 6-4, 6-1
2. Nikolina Grbac (UNM) def. Carolina DeLuca (UTEP) 6-2, 6-1
3. Kristin Eggleston (UNM) def. Gabi Vazquez (UTEP) 1-6, 7-6, 1-0 (10-5)
4. Anya Villanueva (UNM) def. Alexandra Glebova (UTEP) 6-2, 6-2
5. Rebeca Calvillo (UTEP) def. Laura Richardson (UNM) 4-6, 6-0, 1-0 (10-8)
6. Michaela Oldani (UNM) def. Ximena Fuentes (UTEP) 6-3, 7-6

Doubles competition
1. Ashley Bonner/Anya Villanueva (UNM) def. Martina Trierweiler/Carolina DeLuca (UTEP) 8-6
2. Michaela Bezdickova/Nikolina Grbac (UNM) def. Ximena Fuentes/Gabi Vazquez (UTEP) 8-2
3. Marie LeBlond/Rebeca Calvillo (UTEP) def. Kristin Eggleston/Laura Richardson (UNM) 8-5

TCU Can’t Hold Off Texas A&M-Corpus Christi Saturday, 4-3

After sweeping through doubles, the Frogs dropped four of the last five singles matches

FORT WORTH – The TCU men’s tennis team ended the opening homestand of the 2011 season with a tough 4-3 loss to Texas A&M-Corpus Christi Saturday at the Bayard H. Friedman Tennis Center.

“We have to get better in preparing for our matches,” TCU head coach David Roditi. “As a staff, we have to turn up the intensity in practice to get this team ready to play. I take full responsibility for not having my team ready.”

For the second-straight match, TCU (2-1) swept all three courts to claim the doubles point. After junior Slah Mbarek and sophomore Soren Goritzka cruised to an 8-2 victory from the No. 2 position, senior Zach Nichols and junior newcomer Daniel Sanchez clinched the early 1-0 advantage from the third court with an 8-4 win.

TCU’s No. 55 doubles team of seniors Emanuel Brighiu and Christopher Price earned another tough-fought victory, moving their early season record to 3-0. With the crowd behind them, the Horned Frog duo topped the Islanders’ top tandem of James Langford and Laurent Montoisy in dramatic fashion, 8-7 (12).

Senior Cameron Nash gave TCU a 2-0 lead in the team scoring, knocking off TAMUCC’s Gergo Weindinger from the No. 5 court in straight sets, 6-3, 6-4. Nichols pushed the Frogs to within one singles win from winning the match, defeating Raguz from the third court, 6-1, 3-6, 6-3.

However, the Islanders weren’t going away that easy. After earning a win from the No. 6 singles court, TAMUCC’s Langford brought his team from within one point after dropping Gortizka in three sets from the No. 2 spot, 6-1, 4-6, 6-3. The Islanders tied the team score at 3-3 with a three-set winner from the fifth court.

With all eyes left on the top spot, TCU’s Brighiu was in the middle of a battle with Montoisy. After falling in an opening tiebreaker set, 7-6 (5), the Iasi, Romania, product pulled himself together to take the second frame, 6-4. In the final set, with the team win on the line, Brighiu jumped out to an impressive 3-1 lead, only to have Montoisy show enough grit to pull off the upset, 7-6 (5), 4-6, 6-4.

“We missed a chance early in singles to take some open sets,” Roditi said. We let some matches slip out of our hands late, because we couldn’t play well to start singles.”

The 49th-ranked Frogs will now pack their bags for the first road trip of the season, leaving the Lone Star State to take on Wichita State (Feb. 4) and No. 35 Tulsa (Feb. 6).

Texas A&M-Corpus Christi (2-4) def. No. 49 TCU (2-1), 4-3
Bayard H. Friedman Tennis Center | Fort Worth, Texas

SINGLES
1. Laurent Montoisy (TAMUCC) def. Emanuel Brighiu (TCU) 7-6 (5), 4-6, 6-4
2. James Langford (TAMUCC) def. Soren Goritzka (TCU) 6-1, 4-6, 6-3
3. Zach Nichols (TCU) def. Robert Raguz (TAMUCC) 6-1, 3-6, 6-3
4. Aurelien Tave (TAMUCC) def. Slah Mbarek (TCU) 7-5, 4-6, 6-2
5. Cameron Nash (TCU) def. Gergo Weindinger (TAMUCC) 6-3, 6-4
6. Matt Westmoreland (TAMUCC) def. Santiago Centeno (TCU) 6-2, 6-3
Order of Finish: 5, 3, 6, 2, 4, 1*

DOUBLES
1. No. 55 Brighiu/Price (TCU) def. Langford/Montoisy (TAMUCC) 8-7 (12)
2. Mbarek/Goritzka (TCU) def. Raguz/Robinson (TAMUCC) 8-2
3. Nichols/Sanchez (TCU) def. Maingot/Pavlov (TAMUCC) 8-4
Order of finish: 2, 3*, 1

No. 24 Washington rallies for win over No. 16 Texas, 4-3

Horns win the doubles point and add singles wins from senior Maggie Mello and freshman Juliana Gajic in the defeat.

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – No. 16 Texas (1-1) collected the doubles point and added singles wins from senior Maggie Mello and freshman Juliana Gajic, but No. 24 Washington (3-0) escaped with a 4-3 victory over the Horns Saturday at Florida State’s Speicher Tennis Facility.

Texas took two of three matches to secure the doubles point and take a 1-0 lead. UT’s Mello and Gajic teamed up for a convincing 8-1 win at third doubles over Washington’s Lina Xu and Aleksandra Krsljanin before UT freshman Cierra Gaytan-Leach and senior Amanda Craddock dispatched UW’s Samantha Smith and Anjela Nemcevic by an 8-3 count at second doubles.

Washington assumed a 2-1 lead behind victories at the second and sixth singles positions. The Huskies’ 55th-ranked Venise Chan topped UT’s Krista Damico by a 6-3, 7-5 count before UW’s Krsljanin topped UT’s Gaytan-Leach at sixth singles, 7-6 (4), 6-2.

Texas rebounded with victories at the fourth and fifth singles positions to take a 3-2 lead. Mello notched a 6-4, 7-6 win at the fourth slot over the Huskies’ Nemcevic and Gajic improved to 2-0 in dual-match play with a 6-4, 6-4 win over UW’s Xu. But, the Huskies rallied to win a pair of three-set matches to emerge with the 4-3 win. Washington’s Smith defeated UT’s Craddock in a third-set tiebreaker at third singles, 7-5 before UW’s sixth-ranked Dy outlasted Texas’ eighth-ranked Ellis, 7-5 in the final set at first singles to nail down the win.

Texas resumes play on Sunday at 9 a.m. Central when it takes on Princeton as part of the ITA Kick-Off Weekend in Tallahassee, Fla.

No. 24 Washington 4, No. 16 Texas 3
Doubles – Order of Finish: 3, 2
1 #87 Damico/Ellis (UT) vs. Dy/Chan (UW) – 6-7, susp.
2 Gaytan-Leach/Craddock (UT) def. Smith/Nemcevic (UW) – 8-3
3 Gajic/Mello (UT) def. Xu/Krsljanin (UW) – 8-1

Singles – Order of Finish: 2, 6, 4, 5, 3, 1
1 #6 Denise Dy (UW) def. #8 Aeriel Ellis (UT) – 2-6, 7-6, 7-5
2 #55 Venise Chan (UW) def. Krista Damico (UT) – 6-3, 7-5
3 Samantha Smith (UW) def. Amanda Craddock (UT) – 6-3, 2-6, 7-6 (5)
4 Maggie Mello (UT) def. Anjela Nemcevic (UW) – 6-4, 7-6
5 Juliana Gajic (UT) def. Lina Xu (UW) – 6-4, 6-4
6 Aleksandra Krsljanin (UW) def. Cierra Gaytan-Leach (UT) – 7-6 (4), 6-2

Texas, Rice men advance at ITA Kickoff, will face each other Sunday

No. 5 Texas (4-0) won the doubles point and added singles victories from senior Kellen Damico, sophomore Daniel Whitehead and freshman Sudanwa Sitaram in a 4-0 win over Hawaii on Saturday at UT’s Penick-Allison Tennis Center.

The match was played as part of the annual ITA Kick-Off Weekend. Rice defeated Alabama by a 4-1 count in the other match at Penick-Allison on Saturday. Texas and Rice will go head-to-head on Sunday at 2 p.m. with the winner advancing to next month’s ITA National Team Indoor Championship in Seattle, Wash. Hawaii will meet Alabama at 10 a.m. Central.

Texas got off to a fast start in doubles and quickly secured the doubles point. UT’s fifth-ranked duo of Ed Corrie and Jean Andersen struck first at No. 1 doubles with an 8-3 win over Hawaii’s Dennis Lajola and Danilo Casanova. Likewise at third doubles, UT’s Whitehead and Alex Hilliard broke Hawaii early at third doubles and raced out to an 8-1 win over the Warriors’ Jonathan Brooklyn and David Schuster to clinch the doubles point for the Longhorns. The remaining doubles match was suspended.

Damico made short work of Hawaii’s Leo Rosenberg and posted a 6-1, 6-2 victory at second singles. Whitehead blanked Hawaii’s Casanova in the first set and cruised to a 6-2 second-set win to give Texas a 3-0 lead. Sitaram followed suit and blanked the Warriors’ Dmytro Kovalyov in the first set before registering a 6-3 second-set win to give Texas its fourth and match-deciding point. The remaining matches were called given that the match’s outcome had been determined.

POST-MATCH COMMENTS

Texas head coach Michael Center

“We got out to a great start in doubles and I was happy to get that point the way we did. I’m pleased with the way some of our guys started out and quickly won their first sets. Kellen Damico got off the court in no time. Daniel Whitehead and Sudanwa Sitaram had great starts and were able to finish off their matches decisively. We will have Rice coming up tomorrow. We have a history of great matches with Rice, and I expect another one tomorrow.”

The 29th ranked Rice Owls moved on to the second round of the ITA National Indoor Championships with a 4-1 victory over 37th ranked Alabama at the Penick-Allison Tennis Center in Austin on Saturday. With the win, the Owls will face the 5th ranked Texas Longhorns at 2 p.m. on Sunday, looking to advance the final round of 16, which will be held in Seattle, Washington on February 18-21.

The Owls captured the doubles point with a win at No. 3 when Sam Garforth-Bles and Peter Frank closed out Jarryd Botha and Trey Walston, 8-4. Bama tied the match when Ricky Doverspike downed Harry Fowler at No. 1 singles (6-3, 6-1), the Owls stormed back with wins by Peter Frank, Christian Saravia and Sam Garforth-Bles to close out the Crimson Tide.

ITA Kick-Off Weekend – 1st Round
#5 Texas 4, Hawaii 0
Doubles – Order of Finish: 1, 3
1 #5 Ed Corrie/Jean Andersen (UT) def. Dennis Lajola/Danilo Casanova (Hawaii) – 8-3
2 #35 Kellen Damico/David Holiner (UT) vs. Daniel Llarenas/Jeremy Tweedt (Hawaii) – 7-2, susp.
3 Daniel Whitehead/Alex Hilliard (UT) def. Jonathan Brooklyn/David Schuster (Hawaii) – 8-1

Singles – Order of Finish: 2, 5, 6
1 Ed Corrie (UT) vs. Dennis Lajola (Hawaii) – 3-6, 4-5, susp.
2 Kellen Damico (UT) def. Leo Rosenberg (Hawaii) – 6-1, 6-2
3 Jean Andersen (UT) vs. Jeremy Tweedt (Hawaii) – 6-4, 2-5, susp.
4 #78 Vasko Mladenov (UT) vs. Jonathan Brooklyn (Hawaii) – 7-6, susp.
5 Daniel Whitehead (UT) def. Danilo Casanova (Hawaii) – 6-0, 6-2
6 Sudanwa Sitaram (UT) def. Dmytro Kovalyov (Hawaii) – 6-0, 6-3

Rice 4, Alabama 1
Doubles – Order of Finish: 2, 1, 3
1 Ricky Doverspike/Vikram Reddy (UA) def. Michael Nuesslein/Christian Saravia (Rice) – 8-5
2 Oscar Podlewski/Harry Fowler (Rice) def. Ian Chadwell/Daniil Proskura (UA) – 8-2
3 Sam Garforth-Bles/Peter Frank (Rice) def. Jarryd Botha/Trey Walston (UA) – 8-4

Singles – Order of Finish: 1, 2, 6, 4
1 Ricky Doverspike (UA) def. #44 Harry Fowler (Rice) – 6-3, 6-1
2 Peter Frank (Rice) def. Jarryd Botha (UA) – 6-2, 6-3
3 #121 Phillip Seifert (Rice) vs. Vikram Reddy (UA) – 6-2, 6-6, susp.
4 Sam Garforth-Bles (Rice) def. Daniil Proskura (UA) – 6-2, 7-6 (7)
5 Oscar Podlewski (Rice) vs. Michael Thompson (UA) – 6-3, 5-4, susp.
6 Christian Saravia (Rice) def. Ian Chadwell (UA) – 6-4, 6-3

Frog Women Fall in Thriller at ITA Kickoff Weekend

BERKELEY, Calif. – TCU’s women’s tennis dropped a tough 4-3 decision to No. 40 St. Mary’s College in first-round action of the ITA Kickoff Weekend on Friday evening at the Hellman Tennis Complex.

The match was tied at three with only the No. 4 singles match still in progress. Claire Soper of Saint Mary’s eventually got the better of No. 51 TCU’s Shalini Sahoo by a score of 6-0, 2-6, 6-4. The match, which was the only singles match to go three sets, lasted 1 hour and 53 minutes.

At No. 1 singles, the Gaels claimed another close win with 87th-ranked Alex Poorta dropped TCU’s Katariina Tuohimaa, 6-3, 7-6 (7). The two close wins were enough for St. Mary’s (1-1) to overcome TCU (1-1) claiming the crucial doubles point to open the match.

The Horned Frogs picked up their two needed wins at doubles at the Nos. 1 and 3 slots after St. Mary’s had claimed a win at No. 2 doubles. At No. 1, Tuohimaa and Federica Denti quickly took care of No. 87 Catherin Isip and Alex Poorta of Saint Mary’s with an 8-3 win in 53 minutes.

TCU’s Gaby Mastromarino and Olivia Smith battled from a 6-2 deficit to Anna Chikhikvishvili and Claire Soper before claiming a 9-7 win and giving the Frogs a 1-0 lead on the scoreboard.

“I was really happy with how we played in the doubles,” TCU coach Dave Borelli said. “That last match could have gone either way and the girls really worked hard to get that win. It’s unfortunate we couldn’t win the match, but we’re going to keep working on things. We’ve got a touch match with North Texas tomorrow.”

After the doubles, St. Mary’s took a 2-1 lead after just 50 minutes of singles action. Chikhikvishvili was a 6-1, 6-4 winner over TCU’s Idunn Hertzberg at No. 5 singles, Denti fell to Isip, 6-3, 6-1, at No. 2 singles.

The Frogs evened the match at two with Smith’s second singles win of the season at the No. 3 position. She was a 6-1, 6-3 winner over Jenny Jullien of St. Mary’s.

Mastromarino gave TCU a 3-2 lead in the match with a win at No. 6 singles, which was also her second win of the young season. She grabbed a 6-3, 6-2 decision over Molly Aloia.

TCU returns to action at the ITA Kickoff Weekend on Saturday at 10 a.m. PT against North Texas.

No. 40 Saint Mary’s College 4, No. 51 TCU 3
Hellman Tennis Complex | Berkeley, Calif. | 2011 ITA Kick-Off Weekend
Doubles
1. Denti/Tuohimaa (TCU) def. No. 87 Isip/Poorta 8-3
2. Fisher/Jullien (SMC) def. Babanova/Hertzberg 8-3
3. Mastromarino/Smith (TCU) def. Chikhikvishvili/Soper 9-7
Order of finish: 2, 1, 3* (TCU wins doubles point)

Singles
1. No. 87 Alex Poorta (SMC) def. Katariina Tuohimaa 6-3, 7-6(7)
2. Catherine Isip (SMC) def. Federica Denti 6-3, 6-1
3. Olivia Smith (TCU) def. Jenny Jullien 6-1, 6-3
4. Claire Soper (SMC) def. Shalini Sahoo 6-0, 2-6, 6-4
5. Anna Chikhikvishvili (SMC) def. Idunn Hertzberg 6-1, 6-4
6. Gaby Mastromarino (TCU) def. Molly Aloia 6-3, 6-2
Order of finish: 5, 2, 3, 6, 1, 4*

Cal women top North Texas, 6-1

BERKELEY – The ninth-ranked California women’s tennis team (1-0) defeated No. 60 North Texas (1-2), 6-1, in the first match of the 2011 ITA Kick-Off Weekend event at the Hellman Tennis Complex on Friday, Jan. 28.

Facing a thick Bay Area fog, Cal and North Texas fought out a tough one-hour doubles point, but the Bears wrestled away the first point of the day as Goransson and fellow sophomore Tayler Davis came up with an 8-4 win over Nadia Lee and Ranganathan on court two. The Mean Green struck first by getting a win from Paula Dinuta and Amy Joubert at court three. The North Texas tandem defeated Cal’s French-Connection combination of senior Marina Cossou and freshman Alice Duranteau, 8-6. The Bears evened the race for the doubles point as their No. 5-ranked team of senior Mari Andersson and junior Jana Juricova came up with an 8-4 win over Irina Paraschiv and Barbora Vykydalova on the top court.

Top-ranked Juricova wasted little time putting Cal up, 2-0, as she defeated Dinuta, 6-0, 6-2, on the top singles court. From there, matches finished down the six-court lineup as the Bears pulled away to win, 6-1. On court two, No. 46-ranked Andersson came alive in the second set of her match to complete a 6-4, 6-0 win over Paraschiv. One court down, Goransson sealed the deal for Cal with her win over Ranganathan.

With the match decided, No. 35-ranked Davis took out Lee at court four, 6-4, 7-5, to make the score, 5-0, for Cal. Duranteau added a sixth point for the Bears after splitting sets with Vykydalova at court five, 6-3, 4-6. Duranteau battled back from down, 3-0, to come out on top, 11-9, in the third-set match tiebreaker. North Texas tacked up its only point of the day on a win from court six. Joubert edged junior Stephany Chang, 9-7, in a first-set tiebreaker to come up with a 7-6, 6-3 win.

The Bears will be back in action at Hellman Tennis Complex at 2 p.m. PT on Saturday, Jan. 29, to face the winner of today’s match between No. 40 Saint Mary’s College (0-1) and No. 51 Texas Christian (1-0). The winner of the Saturday-afternoon final will advance to the 2011 ITA National Team Indoor Championships at the Boar’s Head Tennis Club in Charlottesville, Va., Feb. 18-21.

No. 9 California 6, No. 60 North Texas 1
Hellman Tennis Complex | Berkeley, Calif. | 2011 ITA Kick-Off Weekend
Friday, Jan. 28, 2011

New records:
California (1-0), North Texas (1-2)
Doubles
1. No. 5 Andersson/Juricova (CAL) def. Paraschiv/Vykydalova (UNT) 8-4
2. Davis/Goransson (CAL) def. Lee/Ranganathan (UNT) 8-4
3. Dinuta/Joubert (UNT) def. Cossou/Duranteau (CAL) 8-6
Order of finish: 3, 1, 2* (California wins doubles point)
Singles
1. No. 1 Jana Juricova (CAL) def. Paula Dinuta (UNT) 6-0, 6-2
2. No. 46 Mari Andersson (CAL) def. Irina Paraschiv (UNT) 6-4, 6-0
3. No. 44 Annie Goransson (CAL) def. Madura Ranganathan (UNT) 6-2, 6-3
4. No. 35 Tayler Davis (CAL) def. Nadia Lee (UNT) 6-4, 7-5
5. Alice Duranteau (CAL) def. Barbora Vykydalova (UNT) 6-3, 4-6, 1-0(9)
6. Amy Joubert (UNT) def. Stephany Chang (CAL) 7-6(7), 6-3
Order of finish: 1, 2, 3*, 4, 5, 6

Baylor Men, Skipping ITA Kickoff, Coast Past TAMU-CC, 7-0

Bears push win streak over Islanders to nine straight matches with shutout win.

WACO – The ninth-ranked Baylor men’s tennis team kicked off a three match home stand with a 7-0 blanking of Texas A&M Corpus Christi (1-4) on Friday afternoon at the Baylor Tennis Center.

“It is good to have a good taste in your mouth,” head coach Matt Knoll said. “I thought the guys came out and really focused and did a great job of getting after it. It is something we need to build on.”

The win moved the Bears to 2-1 on the season, while improving their record against the Islanders to 9-0 over the last 10 years. The victory was also Baylor’s first win at its home facility this year.

Looking to rebound from a loss to Florida in the last match out, Knoll made changes to both his singles and doubles lineups as he inserted freshman Dennis Lengsfeld into the No. 2 doubles team and at the No. 3 singles spot.

In doubles, Baylor’s No. 3 pairing of Julian Bley and Kike Grangeiro got the Bears off to a fast start as the duo swept Andrew Maingot and Alex Pavlov, 8-0. The match win kept the BU tandem perfect on the season with a 3-0 record. The fourth-ranked pair of John Peers and Roberto Maytin would claim the doubles point for Baylor as they got past Laurent Montoisy and James Langford, 8-3. At the No. 2 position, Lengsfeld made his Baylor dual match debut with partner Jordan Rux. Down 3-2 in their match against Nathan Robinson and Robert Raguz, the BU tandem claimed three straight games and never looked back to win 8-6.

“As I have said, I think our doubles is going to be a strength for us,” Knoll said. “We have practiced incredibly well and our No. 3 team played exceptional today. They got hot and played really played well for us. For Jordan and Dennis, I think it was their first real match together. They were a little disjointed at times, but they did a great job of finishing.”

It is the second time in Baylor’s first three matches that the Bears have won all three doubles contests.

Baylor kept the momentum rolling into singles as the 22nd-ranked Peers was first off the court. The Baylor senior raced out to a 6-1 first set win, before his opponent Mointoisy retired from the contest giving the Bears a 2-0 lead in the match. The victory moves Peers to 3-0 on the season.

Rux followed with his first win of the dual match season as he dispatched of Langford, 6-2, 6-1 to move Baylor within a point of victory.

“Jordan made a good step,” Knoll said. “I think this week has been a good week for him in practice. As we know he took the fall off and didn’t compete and I think just getting a chance to get on the court and compete and get his rhythm is big for him.”

The next three matches off finished within five minutes of each other as Grangeiro at the No. 6 spot claimed the match for BU with a 6-0, 6-2 win over Matt Westmoreland. The triumph pushes the Baylor junior’s dual match record to 3-0.

Maytin followed at the No. 5 spot with a 6-1, 6-2 victory over Gergo Weidinger and then senior Sergio Ramirez took down Aurelien Tave 6-4, 6-0 at the No. 4 spot.

The wins boosted the Baylor lead to 6-0 and set the stage for Lengsfeld to get his first singles win.

As the other singles matches had wrapped, Lengsfeld was pushed to a third set, after winning the first 6-4 and losing the second to Raguz, 6-1. The freshman from Alterkuelz, Germany responded by taking the third set, 7-5. Lengsfeld fell behind 3-1 in the deciding set, before storming back to earn the victory.

“I think Dennis is a very good tennis player,” Knoll said. “Today was tough for him, because he hasn’t been in this environment, so he was incredibly nervous, which is expected. It was good that he was able to fight and get a couple of wins. I think that will settle him down and make him a little more ready when we play our next match.”

Baylor now holds a 9-6 series advantage over Texas A&M Corpus Christi and is 9-1 versus the Islanders in Waco.

The Bears will continue their home stand as they host sixth-ranked UCLA on Sunday, Feb. 6 at 12 p.m.
Admission to the match is free. Live scoring and a live blog will be available at BaylorBears.com.

“The next test is going to be really, really tough with UCLA coming in here,” Knoll said. “We are excited about it and I think we can’t wait to get back out here on Sunday.”

Match Notes: Baylor is now 80-2 against unranked opponents in the Matt Knoll era with a current 66-match win streak in such matches. The Bears improved their all-time record at the Baylor Tennis Center to 131-7, while upping their mark against non-conference opposition to 252-65 over the last 14 years.

#9 Baylor 7, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi 0
Jan 28, 2011 at Waco, Texas
(Baylor Tennis Center)

Singles competition
1. #22 John Peers (BU) def. Laurent Montoisy (AMCC) 6-1, retired
2. Jordan Rux (BU) def. James Langford (AMCC) 6-2, 6-1
3. Dennis Lengsfeld (BU) def. Robert Raguz (AMCC) 6-4, 1-6, 7-5
4. Sergio Ramirez (BU) def. Aurelien Tave (AMCC) 6-4, 6-0
5. Roberto Maytin (BU) def. Gergo Weidinger (AMCC) 6-1, 6-2
6. Kike Grangeiro (BU) def. Matt Westmoreland (AMCC) 6-0, 6-2

Doubles competition
1. #4 John Peers/Roberto Maytin (BU) def. Laurent Montoisy/James Langford (AMCC) 8-3
2. Dennis Lengsfeld/Jordan Rux (BU) def. Nathan Robinson/Robert Raguz (AMCC) 8-6
3. Julian Bley/Kike Grangeiro (BU) def. Andrew Maingot/Alex Pavlov (AMCC) 8-0

Match Notes:
Texas A&M-Corpus Christi 1-4
Baylor 2-1; National ranking #9
Order of finish: Doubles (3,1,2); Singles (1,2,6,5,4,3)

Lots of pods, but no podcast for the ITA Kickoff Weekend

As I tweeted yesterday, Colette Lewis (zootennis.com) and I taped a 54-minute podcast yesterday afternoon, breaking down all 30 pods for this weekend’s ITA Kickoff. We had run several tests and everything seemed to be working great. We took a break and started the actual podcast taping, probably giving some of the best insight you could head anywhere (This is a joke-we actually apologized to the uber-fans across the country who know so much about their own teams). When we hung up, I went on to edit and start to put it together. Unfortunately, only her audio was recorded. I felt sick. I tried to see if there was anything to fix it, but there wasn’t. There are probably those who think the podcast without me and with ONLY Colette might be actually better to listen to… and I cannot argue with that.

I was so bummed out, I cancelled my scheduled interview with Erica Perkins (from the USTA), who will likely be heading to Miami this weekend to watch.

We are going to try this again in a few weeks – maybe before the final 16, I promise.

I am too mentally worn out to re-hash what we discussed and only want to give a few details of what I expect in Texas. Much of this I created to more real job at the USTA earlier in the week.

One big question mark if the weather. It is absolutely beautiful today in Austin. The high is supposed to reach 73 this afternoon. Unfortunately, the rain is supposed to come tomorrow. What was once a 70% chance of thunderstorms in Austin is now a 50% chance. That forecast extends to Waco and College Station. Ironically, Lubbock is forecast to have the best weather tomorrow with clear skies and a high of 73…

Coach Joey Scrivano’s Lady Bears will be the lone Texas host on the women’s side when Baylor welcomes Alabama, Rice and Oklahoma State to Waco. The Lady Bears are currently ranked third in the country and will again contend for a national title.

I actually like Rice to top Oklahoma State this weekend. The Cowgirls lost to North Texas last weekend and Rice has improved their depth. Baylor on the other hand has two incredible transfers (Sona Novakova and Diana Nakic) that have forced Nina Secerbegovic, who was unbeatable at #2 last season into the third spot. They will cruise.

Other Texas women’s teams in action will be Texas (at the Florida State pod), Texas A&M (Duke pod), Rice (Baylor pod), SMU (Tennessee pod) and both TCU and North Texas at the Cal pod.

On the men’s side, Texas, Texas A&M and Texas Tech will each host kickoff events.

The Longhorns welcome Rice, Hawaii and Alabama to Austin, while the Aggies will play host to Mississippi State, Arizona and Miami. Texas Tech will host LSU, Cal and Auburn out on the South Plains.

Dennis Lajola of Hawaii has been playing in the Honolulu Challenger, but apparently caught a flight after his loss and has arrived in Austin. Harry Fowler of Rice is playing at number one for the Owls after transferring from Ole Miss. I am excited for Harry to be playing so well.

Austin Krajicek was playing in the same tournament in Hawaii and lost as well yesterday, but I am not sure if he has yet returned to College Station. The Aggies has an interesting pod, as Mississippi State is a dangerous team as a four seed and may actually be the second best team there. If Krajicek stays away for Saturday, that would not only effect their singles lineup but take out arguably the best doubles team in the country. We will see.

The complete schedule is below, so get out and enjoy some quality tennis!

Women

Waco, Texas
Baylor-Hurd Tennis Building

Schedule of Play:
Sat, Jan 29 – 11 am (Baylor v. Alabama)
Sat, Jan 29 – 1 pm (Rice v. Oklahoma State)
Sun, Jan 30 – 11 am (consolation)
Sun, Jan 30 – 1 pm (championship)

Durham, NC
Duke Sheffield Tennis Center (Indoors)

Schedule of Play:
Sun, Jan 30 – 10 am (Duke v. Brown)
Sun, Jan 30 – 2 pm (Tulsa v. Texas A&M)
Mon, Jan 31 – 10 am (consolation)
Mon, Jan 31 – 2 pm (championship)

Berkeley, CA
Cal Hellman Tennis Complex, Channing Facility

Schedule of Play:
Fri, Jan 28 – 10 am (Cal v. North Texas)
Fri, Jan 28 – 2 pm (St. Mary’s CA v. TCU)
Sat, Jan 29 – 10 am (consolation)
Sat, Jan 29 – 2 pm (championship)

Knoxville, TN
Tennessee Indoors

Schedule of Play:
Sun, Jan 30 – 10 am (Mississippi v. SMU)
Sun, Jan 30 – 2 pm (Tennessee v. Ohio State)
Mon, Jan 31 – 10 am (consolation)
Mon, Jan 31 – 2 pm (championship)

Tallahassee, FL
Florida State Scott Speicher Tennis Facility

Schedule of Play:
Sat, Jan 29 – 10 am (Texas v. Washington)
Sat, Jan 29 – 2 pm (Florida State v. Princeton)
Sun, Jan 30 – 10 am (consolation)
Sun, Jan 30 – 2 pm (championship)

MEN

Austin, TX
Texas Penick Alison Tennis Center

Schedule of Play:
Sat, Jan 29 – 10 am (Rice v. Alabama)
Sat, Jan 29 – 2 pm (Texas v. Hawaii)
Sun, Jan 30 – 10 am (consolation)
Sun, Jan 30 – 2 pm (championship)

College Station, TX
Texas A&M George P. Mitchell Tennis Center

Schedule of Play:
Sat, Jan 29 – 12 pm (Texas A&M v. Mississippi State)
Sat, Jan 29 – 3 pm (Arizona v. Miami)
Sun, Jan 30 – 12 pm (consolation)
Sun, Jan 30 – 3 pm (championship)

Lubbock, TX
Texas Tech

Schedule of Play:
Sat, Jan 29 – 12 pm (Texas Tech v. LSU)
Sat, Jan 29 – 3 pm (Cal v. Auburn)
Sun, Jan 30 – 12 pm (consolation)
Sun, Jan 30 – 3 pm (championship).

SMU’s Cieplucha Named First Spring C-USA Player of the Week

SMU’s Cieplucha and Tulsa’s De Klerk Take First Honors of Spring

IRVING – With the first honors of the spring season, SMU sophomore Edyta Cieplucha and Tulsa freshman Japie De Klerk have been named the Conference USA Athletes of the Week. Cieplucha garnered the women’s recognition as she started the dual season with a 6-0 overall mark, with all wins coming at either the No. 1 or No. 2 spot for the Mustangs. On the men’s side, De Klerk began his career at Tulsa on a high note, finding four more wins in the team’s second week of play.

WOMEN’S TENNIS ATHLETE OF THE WEEK (Jan. 25)
EDYTA CIEPLUCHA – SMU
Sophomore – Wisnowa Gora, Poland

Opening the season with a three-match weekend, Cieplucha found nothing but victories as she swept both singles and doubles action. In singles play, the sophomore competed at the No. 2 position for the Mustangs and won 36 of 44 games, including a dominant 6-1, 6-0 win over the No. 113 player in the nation, Monica Winkel of Louisiana Monroe. Cieplucha was a force in doubles play, as well, winning 24 of 31 games in three matches. She played at the No. 1 spot alongside Marta Lesniak as the duo took an 8-2 win over Texas-Pan American and then paired with Heather Steinbauer for wins against Louisiana Monroe and Texas-San Antonio. Her performance helped the SMU squad to a 3-0 start to the season. Cieplucha earns her first Athlete of the Week honor.