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Men’s Tennis: Irish lose twice in ITA tourney

Mike Gotimer | Monday, February 18, 2008

Facing some of the toughest competition in the country, Notre Dame split its first two matches in the ITA National Team Indoor Championships this weekend in Seattle and earned a spot in the consolation final before falling to No. 12 North Carolina Sunday.

On Friday, the Irish faced off against No. 8 UCLA in the first round and lost a tough one to the Bruins, 4-0.

The Irish began the match by losing the doubles point despite a strong showing from senior Sheeva Parbhu and junior Brett Helgeson, who beat UCLA senior Harel Srugo and freshman Nick Meister 8-2.

Notre Dame senior Andrew Roth and freshman Stephen Havens lost a close match to Bruins senior Mathieu Dehaine and freshman Holden Seguso by a score of 8-6.

The final Irish pair of freshman Tyler Davis and junior Santiago Montoya came up short against UCLA junior Mike Look and senior Jeremy Dean by a score of 8-4.

The Bruins took the momentum from their doubles win into the singles and won their first three matches to secure the 4-0 win.

The Irish loss to UCLA set up a Saturday match in the second round of the consolation bracket against No. 16 Penn State, whom the Irish defeated on Jan. 20. The Irish were able to rebound from the tough loss to UCLA on Friday to pick up a 4-2 win.

The Irish started slowly and lost the doubles point. Parbhu and Helgeson lost to Penn State junior Adam Slagter and freshman Eddie Bourchier, 8-5. The second Irish doubles pair of Davis and Montoya dropped the second match 8-4 to Nittany Lions senior Michael James and junior Brendan Lynch.

Despite the slow start in doubles, the Irish came back strong in singles play to surge ahead of the Nittany Lions. The Irish picked up their first two singles wins from Havens and fellow freshman Dan Stahl.

Havens earned the first Irish win after Bourchier withdrew from the match. Stahl then defeated Penn State freshman Jake Toole in straight sets, 6-2, 6-2.

The Irish dominance in singles continued with No. 11 Helgeson, defeating No. 51 James in straight sets, 6-1, 6-4, which gave the Irish a 3-1 lead. Penn State took the next point as Lynch defeated Roth, 6-2, 6-3.

Notre Dame earned its fourth point when Parbhu defeated Slagter in three sets, 6-1, 4-6, 6-3, to clinch the Irish victory.

The Irish could not keep their momentum from the Penn State win going against North Carolina and were shut out 5-0 Sunday against the Tar Heels.

Parbhu and Helgeson won the No. 1 doubles point 8-5 against North Carolina’s David Stone and Lenny Gullan. But the Tar Heels dominated the rest of the match, taking every other point in both doubles and singles.