MENâ€™S TENNIS FALLS IN NCAA TOURNAMENT FIRST ROUND TO #8 OKLAHOMA STATE
STILLWATER, Okla. -- Sacramento State’s first appearance at the NCAA Men’s Tennis Tournament since 2003 came to an end Saturday afternoon after eighth-ranked Oklahoma State defeated the Hornets, 4-0, in the first round at the Debois Tennis Center.
The Hornets, who earned an automatic berth into the tournament by virtue of winning the Big Sky Conference Tournament title two weeks ago, see their season come to a close with a 20-6 overall record. Sacramento State had won 19 of its previous 22 matches until today’s loss.
Oklahoma State improved its record to 18-4 and will face 26th-ranked Oklahoma in the second round tomorrow. Oklahoma knocked off 40th-ranked Cal, 4-3, earlier today in the other first round matchup at the Debois Tennis Center. Oklahoma State is hosting NCAA first and second round matches for the third straight year.
Oklahoma State began today’s match by winning the doubles point. At No. 3, the Cowboys duo of Ivan Puchkarov and Dmytro Petrov knocked off the Hornets’ Ramon Perez and Warwick Foy by the score of 8-1. Oklahoma State’s No. 1 tandem of Daniel Byrnes and Oleksandr Nedovyesov (ranked 47th in the nation) then knocked off Anton Stryhas and Gabriel Loredo to give the Cowboys the doubles point. At No. 2, Xavier Barajas-Smith and Hague Van Dillen were trailing, 7-6, before their match was stopped because the Cowboys had already won the necessary two doubles matches to pick up the point.
In singles action, Petrov defeated Perez at No. 4 by the score of 6-0, 6-1 to put Oklahoma State ahead, 2-0. The Cowboys grabbed the third point of the match after 23rd-ranked Nedovyesov defeated Barajas-Smith, 6-1, 6-4. The victory was clinched at No. 5 when Artsem Burmistrau defeated Foy, 6-3, 6-3. The match was then stopped because Oklahoma State already had the necessary four points for victory.
At No. 2, Stryhas had won his first set against 30th-ranked Puchkarov, 6-4, but was trailing in the second set, 5-2, when the match was stopped. Loredo was trailing, 6-2, 4-3 at No. 3 and Lantin was trailing, 6-1, 5-3 at No. 6 when their matches were stopped.
The Hornets were making their fifth NCAA Tournament appearance (1999, 2001-03, 2007) since joining the Div. I ranks in 1991-92. In addition, Sacramento State has won six Big Sky titles in the last 10 years (1998-99, 2001-03, 2007). The Hornets’ 20-6 record is the team’s best since the 2001 squad went 20-3. In addition, the team won at least 20 matches in a season for just the third time in program history.
Although the Hornets’ season came to a close today, it does not take away from one of the most impressive years in program history. The year unfolded despite a singles lineup that featured three freshmen (No. 1 Barajas-Smith, No. 2 Stryhas and No. 6 Loredo). Today marked the final matches in the careers of seniors Loredo (No. 3), Perez (No. 4) and Foy (No. 5). Loredo finished his two-year Sacramento State tenure with a 35-12 career dual match singles record while Perez (45-33 dual match) and Foy (52-40 dual match) finished their four-year careers.
The Hornets, who continue to draw the stiffest of competition at the NCAA Tournament, have now lost in the first round of the tournament to Stanford (1999, 2002), UCLA (2001), Cal (2003) and Oklahoma State (2007).
No. 8 Oklahoma State 4, Sacramento State 0
NCAA Tournament First Round - May 12, 2007
Debois Tennis Center (Stillwater, Okla.)
No. 1- #47 D. Byrnes/Nedovyesov (OSU) def. Stryhas/Loredo (SAC); 8-5
No. 2- Burmistrau/N. Byrnes (OSU) vs. Barajas-Smith/Hague Van Dillen (SAC); 7-6 DNF
No. 3- Puchkarov/Petrov (OSU) def. Perez/Foy (SAC) 8-1
Order of finish: 3, 1
No. 1- #23 Oleksandr Nedovyesov (OSU) def. Xavier Barajas-Smith (SAC); 6-1, 6-4
No. 2- #30 Ivan Puchkarov (OSU) vs. Anton Stryhas (SAC); 4-6, 5-2 DNF
No. 3- Daniel Byrnes (OSU) vs. Gabriel Loredo (SAC) ;6-2, 4-3 DNF
No. 4- Dmytro Petrov (OSU) def. Ramon Perez (SAC); 6-0, 6-1
No. 5- Artsem Burmistrau (OSU) def. Warwick Foy (SAC); 6-3, 6-3
No. 6- Nathan Byrnes (OSU) vs. Tim Lantin (SAC); 6-1, 5-3 DNF
Order of finish: 4, 1, 5