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Men’s Tennis: Irish send three to All-American event

Katelyn Grabarek | Tuesday, October 5, 2010

The Irish finished this past weekend with an impressive 32-7 record at the Chowder Invitational and will now look to three of their top players to perform well at the ITA All-American Tournament in Tulsa, Okla.

“I felt that this was the best weekend we have had in a fall event in some time,” Irish coach Bobby Bayliss said. “From top to bottom we played with intensity and poise. [Senior] Stephen Havens was named the tournament’s outstanding player, but he had a lot of our guys nipping at his heels.”

Havens finished with an undefeated record in both singles and doubles. Bayliss said Havens proved strong throughout the tournament this weekend instead of having a letdown after some major wins, as he had done in the past.

“He had good wins and then backed them up with solid performances, something that he had previously been unable to do. We have always known that he had great potential because of a number of spectacular, but sporadic and limited, good wins,” Bayliss said. “This is the first time that he has shown the ability to handle the pressure and scrutiny needed to win consistently at the top of the lineup.”

After their strong showing in Massachusetts, the Irish sent senior Dan Stahl, junior Casey Watt and sophomore Blas Moros to the ITA All-American tournament that began Sunday.

“Dan Stahl and Blas Moros are playing today [Monday] in Tulsa,” Bayliss said. “Each has a very tough first round match, as Blas plays a returning starter from Virginia, probably the country’s best team this year, and Dan plays one of Florida’s better players. The idea in sending them to the qualifying rounds was to expose them to high national level competition and give them the opportunity to see where they are … Obviously in an event like the All-American any win is a good one and that is what our guys are seeking. All of the best players in the country will be there.”

As a team, the Irish will take some time off before competing in the Midwest Regional Championships on Oct. 21.