Oct. 19, 2009
ANN ARBOR, Mich. - On Monday morning, Notre Dame men's tennis player Casey Watt (Gibsonia, Pa./Pine-Richland) came from behind to beat third-seeded Dennis Nevolo of Illinois 0-6, 6-2, 7-5, to earn a place in the ITA Midwest Regional championship match. But with the championship on the line Monday afternoon, Watt dropped a 6-1, 7-6 (1) decision to second-seeded Moritz Baumann of Wisconsin.
In his run to the finals, Watt knocked-off top-seeded Justin Kronauge of Ohio State, Illinois' third-seeded Nevolo and fifth-seeded Marek Michalicka of Wisconsin. In the ITA preseason rankings, which were released on September 4, Watt was 90th, while Kronauge was 13th, Baumann 19th, Nevolo 24th and Michalicka 34th.
Watt became the eighth Irish men's tennis player to make an appearance in the ITA Midwest regional championship match. Irish legend David DiLucia made Notre Dame's first finals appearance in 1990 on his way to capturing the title. Prior to Watt, Sheeva Parbhu was Notre Dame's most recent finalist, having played for the championship in 2006. Also of note, current Notre Dame associate head coach Ryan Sachire made it to the finals in 1996.
Watt and the Irish close out their fall slate at the William & Mary Invitational in Williamsburg, Va. on Nov. 6-8.