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    Rookie Rallies And Irish Advance In NCAA Tournament

    FIGHTING IRISH Junior Casey Watt won at first singles.
    FIGHTING IRISH
    Junior Casey Watt won at first singles.
    FIGHTING IRISH

    May 13, 2011

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    COLUMBUS, Ohio - The University of Notre Dame men's tennis team defeated East Tennessee in a 4-3 nail-biting match Friday at the Stickney Tennis Center in Columbus, Ohio in the first round of the 2011 NCAA Championships. Freshman Greg Andrews (Gull Lake, Mich./Richland) showed no signs of first-year jitters as he clinched the match for the Irish at fourth singles and defeated Charles Bottoni in a three-set match, 2-6, 6-4, 7-5.

    "I am proud of the way our guys fought," head coach Bobby Bayliss said. "It was far from a perfect match. To have our freshman be the last one on the court speaks volumes for Greg Andrews' poise. He was down 40-love at five all and won five-straight points to break serve. He put himself in the position and he won nine consecutive points. I was a little disappointed in our doubles. I don't think we played as well as we could have, but in singles we came out fighting against a scrappy team. I can see why they did some good things this season."

    The Irish were unable to win the doubles point as junior Casey Watt (Gibsonia, Pa./Pine-Richland) and senior Stephen Havens (Cincinnati, Ohio/Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy) were defeated in an 8-6 decision by Jesus Bandres and Sander Gille at second doubles. Andrews and senior Daniel Stahl (Bethesda, Md./Walt Whitman) were at a 7-5 score on third doubles and in a position to win the match, but before the match was finished junior Niall Fitzgerald (Wicklow, Ireland/Blackrock College) and sophomore Spencer Talmadge (Hillsborough, Calif./Junipero Serra) dropped 8-6 to Charles Bottoni and Grega Teraz at the No. 1 position.

    As the Irish entered the match with a 1-0 deficit, 63rd-ranked Watt quickly even out the score with a victory over Teraz. The Irish junior downed the Buc in straight sets, 6-2, 6-3. Sophomore Blas Moros (Boca Raton, Fla./Pine-Crest) handled Roger Ordeig at six singles with a 6-0, 6-3 victory, which moved the Irish into the lead.

    Notre Dame then dropped back-to-back matches as junior Sam Keeton (Kansas City, Mo./Pembroke Hill) fell in a hard fought 6-4, 4-6, 6-3 match to Ramirez at the No. 5 position. Havens had a strong start to his match at second singles as the senior downed Gille 6-1 in the first set, before falling 6-2 in the second set. The match came down to the wire in the third set, but Havens fell 7-6 and ETSU was able to regain the lead.

    The 95th-ranked Stahl and Andrews remained on the courts at third and fourth singles, respectively. Stahl was in the second set (he had won the first set in a 7-6 decision) and concluded the match as he defeated Bandres 6-4 to place the score at 3-3.

    Andrews remained on the No. 4 court and had split the first two sets with Bottoni, dropping the first set 6-2 and winning the second in a 6-4 decision. The freshman was down 40 to love at five all and fought back to win five-straight points to break serve and ended up winning nine consecutive points.

    The Irish play the winner of the No. 4 Ohio State and Ball State match at 1:00 p.m. (ET) at the Stickney Tennis Center in Columbus, Ohio.

    #30 Notre Dame 4, #61 ETSU 3

    Singles competition

    1. #63 Casey Watt (ND) def. Grega Teraz (ETSU) 6-2, 6-3

    2. Sander Gille (ETSU) def. Stephen Havens (ND) 1-6, 6-2, 7-6

    3. #95 Daniel Stahl (ND) def. Jesus Bandres (ETSU) 7-6, 6-4

    4. Greg Andrews (ND) def. Charles Bottoni (ETSU) 2-6, 6-4, 7-5

    5. Juan Ramirez (ETSU) def. Samuel Keeton (ND) 6-4, 4-6, 6-3

    6. Blas Moros (ND) def. Roger Ordeig (ETSU) 6-0, 6-3

    Doubles competition

    1. Charles Bottoni/Grega Teraz (ETSU) def. #82 Niall Fitzgerald/Spencer Talmadge (ND) 8-6

    2. Jesus Bandres/Sander Gille (ETSU) def. Casey Watt/Stephen Havens (ND) 8-6

    3. Daniel Stahl/Greg Andrews (ND) vs. Robin Akser/Juan Ramirez (ETSU) 7-5, unfinished

    Match Notes: ETSU 17-7; National ranking #61

    Notre Dame 18-11; National ranking #30

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

    First Round of 2011 NCAA Division I Men's Tennis Championship

    Official: Vince Solomon T-3:50 Division I Men's Tennis Championship

     

    -ND--

     

     

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