Aug. 16, 2005
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Eric Langenkamp (Scarsdale, N.Y./Scarsdale H.S.), a rising senior on the University of Notre Dame men’s tennis team, beat Miami’s Eric Hechtman 6-3, 6-1 Tuesday in the IU Varsity Tennis Center to claim the singles title in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) National Summer Championships, presented by the United States Tennis Association (USTA). The victory earned Langenkamp – who combined with sophomore-to-be Yuichi Uda (Wesley Chapel, Fla./Laurel Springs School [CA]) to make Notre Dame the only school with two players among the final 16 in the singles draw – wild-card entry into the first grand slam of the 2005-06 collegiate season and capped a summer that saw several Irish players turn in strong results.
Langenkamp, who saw occasional time at No. 6 singles for the Irish last season, upended Hechtman, one of the No. 5-8 seeds, in straight sets in the title match to become the first Notre Dame player ever to win a title in the ITA National Summer Championships.
“I’m really proud of Eric,” said Notre Dame head coach Bob Bayliss. “This is a testimony to the years of hard work he has put in and to the growth of his game. He had to win two of his matches on the fast indoor courts at Indiana, which is further evidence of his commitment to playing up in the court and being more aggressive. This bodes well for both him and our team for the coming season.”
The singles finalists in the ITA National Summer Championships: runner-up Eric Hechtman of Miami (left) and champion Eric Langenkamp of Notre Dame. (photo courtesy of Mark Walker and the ITA)
“It wasn’t as easy as the score might indicate,” said Langenkamp. “I mixed it up well today, coming to the net at the right times. I didn’t want to let him get into a rhythm, because he’s a really good baseliner. I was able to serve and volley well, and I just played a good all-around game.”
He also copped a spot in the 64-player main draw of the Polo Ralph Lauren ITA Men’s All-American Championships, set for Oct. 6-9 in Tulsa, Okla. Langenkamp will be the first Irish participant in the main draw of the first leg of the collegiate grand slam since Casey Smith reached the second round in 2001.
“I’m really excited,” said Langenkamp of his invitation to the All-Americans. “I never thought I’d have the chance to play in a main draw. I’m looking forward to the chance to play some of the top players in the country.”
Hechtman, also heading into his senior campaign, played Nos. 2 and 3 for the Hurricanes last season and was ranked as high as 78th in the nation. He is unbeaten in two career (completed) collegiate matches against Irish competition, having topped Brian Farrell in 2003 and Brent D’Amico in 2004, both in straight sets. He appeared headed to a third set with Matthew Scott in the ’04 BIG EAST tournament when the Irish clinched the team victory.
Langenkamp, who was 14-4 last season – including 6-0 in his only dual-match action, all at No. 6 – heads into his final campaign with a 43-21 collegiate singles record and now has a pair of ITA Summer Circuit titles to his credit, after prevailing in singles at Michigan in 2003. He was one of the Nos. 9-16 seeds in this tournament and put together six consecutive victories in four days en route to claiming the title. He dropped just a pair of sets, but rallied to win both of those matches and put together a streak that saw him take out four of the top-eight seeds. Among the highlights of his run were wins against Steven Peretz (who played Nos. 4-6 for Michigan last spring), Ryan Preston (Nos. 4-5 for Vanderbilt in ’04), top-seeded Paul Rose (Purdue’s No. 1 player who has been ranked as high as 56th nationally), and Will Gray (Nos. 3-6 for Tulsa in ’04). The victory against Preston in the round of 16 – which was 6-3, 7-5 – avenged Langenkamp’s only defeat in 2005 ITA Summer Circuit action. In last month’s event at Ohio State – which also saw the Irish player knock off top-seeded Chris Klingemann of the host school, avenging a loss in last year’s ITA Midwest Championships when the Buckeye was ranked 90th in the nation – the Commodore prevailed 6-2, 7-6 (7-5) in the final.
“When I beat Preston in a tough match I started to get a lot more confidence,” said Langenkamp. “After that I just tried to focus on the present and not look forward.”
Three other Irish players also participated in the tournament. Uda won two matches to reach the final 16 before falling to Hechtman. Rising junior Ryan Keckley (South Bend, Ind./St. Joseph H.S.) advanced to the semifinals in doubles, playing with Ashwin Kumar of Harvard, before losing 8-5 to a team from Ball State. He won one match in singles before dropping a tight match-tiebreaker contest to the tournament’s third seed, Robert Cameron of Tennessee. Brandon Pierpont (St. Petersburg, Fla./Tampa Preparatory School), a rising sophomore, fell in the second round to Weston Nichols of Cornell in singles and dropped a 9-8 decision in the opening round of doubles play with Uda.
The ITA National Summer Championships are the pinnacle of the ITA Collegiate Summer Circuit, which was played at 23 regional sites throughout the country last month. Several Irish competitors took part in those events, with incoming freshman Santiago Montoya (Austin, Texas/St. Stephen’s Episcopal School) competing in four tournaments in Texas. He was the doubles runner-up in Abilene and reached the semifinals in both Plano and Arlington. In singles play, Montoya was the consolation runner-up in Abilene before reaching the final 16 in Plano and Arlington. In addition to Langenkamp’s singles runner-up finish in Columbus, Ohio, Pierpont reached the doubles final at Florida State. See below for full results of Notre Dame players on this year’s ITA Summer Circuit.
Langenkamp, junior-to-be Stephen Bass (Bronxville, N.Y./Iona Preparatory School), and incoming freshman Brett Helgeson (Overland Park, Kan./Blue Valley West H.S.) also were active this summer in professional futures tournaments around the country. Helgeson earned a wild card into the main draw of the event in Joplin, Mo., last month and prevailed in the opening round before falling in three sets (7-5 in the third) to Andrew Anderson of South Africa, who was ranked 642nd in the world at the time. He also played in the main draw in doubles with his brother, Travis, who plays at the University of Texas. Langenkamp won five matches in qualifying action in futures, including an upset of Salifu Mohammed of Ghana, ranked #721 at the time, on clay in Pittsburgh. Bass took part in qualifying at a futures in Auburn, Calif., in June and then received a wild card into the qualies for the GHI Bronx Tennis Classic Challenger, a tournament just below the level of the main Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) circuit. In that event, which runs this week, he upset Toshiaki Sakai of Japan, who is ranked 521st in the world, in three sets before falling in three to Australian Nathan Healey, who is ranked #255. Barry King (Dublin, Ireland/Gonzaga College), who finished his sophomore season last spring, reached the final of a tournament that awarded him a wild card into qualifying at the Peoria, Ill., futures, but he could not participate in it due to summer school. See below for full results of Irish players in pro tournaments this summer.
Check back to und.com in the next week for a recap of the outstanding results turned in by both Montoya and Helgeson on the USTA’s junior circuit this summer.
ITA Summer National ChampionshipsSingles - First RoundBrandon Pierpont (ND) d. Brandon Gill (Butler), walkover[9-16] Eric Langenkamp (ND) byeRyan Keckley (ND) d. Ty Schaub (Ohio State) 6-1, 6-0Yuichi Uda (ND) byeSingles - Second RoundWeston Nichols (Cornell) d. Brandon Pierpont (ND) 7-5, 6-1[9-16] Eric Langenkamp (ND) d. Jeff French (Western Michigan) 6-1, 6-3 Robert Cameron (Tennessee) d. Ryan Keckley (ND) 4-6, 6-2, 1-0 (10-8)Yuichi Uda (ND) d. [9-16] David Geatz (Minnesota) 7-6, 6-2Singles - Third Round[9-16] Eric Langenkamp (ND) d. Steven Peretz (Michigan) 6-1, 5-7, 1-0 (10-6)Yuichi Uda (ND) d. [17-24] Jarred Liebner (Purdue) 7-6, 6-2Singles - Round of 16[9-16] Eric Langenkamp (ND) d. [5-8] Ryan Preston (Vanderbilt) 6-3, 7-5[5-8] Eric Hechtman (Miami) d. Yuichi Uda (ND) 6-1, 6-0Singles - Quarterfinals[9-16] Eric Langenkamp (ND) d.  Paul Rose (Purdue) 2-6, 6-2, 1-0 (10-7)Singles - Semifinals[9-16] Eric Langenkamp (ND) d. [5-8] Will Gray (Tulsa) 6-4, 6-1Singles - Championship[9-16] Eric Langenkamp (ND) d. [5-8] Eric Hechtman (Miami) 6-3, 6-1Singles - ConsolationJoe Valle (Ball State) d. Brandon Pierpont (ND) 6-2, 6-3Doubles - First RoundHerrera/Pilant d. Pierpont/Uda (ND) 9-8 (2) Ryan Keckley (ND)/Ashwin Kumar (Harvard) byeDoubles - Round of 16 Ryan Keckley (ND)/Ashwin Kumar (Harvard) d. Bacalla/Pelton (Western Michigan) 8-1Doubles - Quarterfinals Ryan Keckley (ND)/Ashwin Kumar (Harvard) d. Cojanu/Sud (William & Mary) 8-5Doubles - SemifinalsEpkey/Thompson (Ball State) d.  Ryan Keckley (ND)/Ashwin Kumar (Harvard) 8-5
ITA Summer CircuitSouthwest - McMurry/Abilene Christian, Abilene, TX, July 9-11SinglesJavier Herrera d.  Santiago Montoya 6-4, 6-3 Santiago Montoya d. Ross Bennett 6-1, 6-4 Santiago Montoya d. Chris Ramsey 6-0, 6-2 Santiago Montoya d. Seth Bridges 6-2, 6-1 Santiago Montoya d. Chris Horton 6-2, 3-6, 1-0 (10-4) Casper Steenkamp d.  Santiago Montoya 6-3, 6-4 - consolation finalDoubles Santiago Montoya/Brent Werbeck d. Adam O'Neal/Jeff West 8-2 Santiago Montoya/Brent Werbeck d.  Hutton Jones/Casper Steenkamp 9-8 Santiago Montoya/Brent Werbeck d.  Garrison Pilant/Tyler Tarnasky 8-5 Jack Seider/Josh Zavala d.  Santiago Montoya/Brent Werbeck 9-8 - championshipSoutheast - Florida State, Tallahassee, FL, July 11-14SinglesBrandon Pierpont (ND) d. Brad Williams 6-3, 6-4Drew Bailey d. Brandon Pierpont (ND) 6-4, 6-4 - round of 16Doubles (complete results unavailable)Pierpont/Roos d. Muthig/StrasburgerPierpont/Roos d. Blackmon/GullanPierpont/Roos d. Hudson/RichardsonPierpont/Roos vs. Chang/Sykut - finalSouthwest - Colin County CC, Plano, TX, July 15-18Singles Santiago Montoya d. Chris Raines 6-0, 6-1 Santiago Montoya d. Brett Proctor 6-0, 6-3 Santiago Montoya d.  Garrison Pilant 6-2, 6-2 Bryan Bankester d.  Santiago Montoya 6-1, 3-6, 1-0 (12-10) - round of 16Doubles Santiago Montoya/Adam Slagter d. Ryan Berber/Justin Merrill 8-5 Santiago Montoya/Adam Slagter d. Lance Camp/Lucas Cardoso 8-3 Santiago Montoya/Adam Slagter d.  Agustin Criado/Bentley Dye 8-3 Manuel Gonzalez/Javier Herrera d.  Santiago Montoya/Adam Slagter - semifinalsSoutheast - Florida, Gainesville, FL, July 16-19SinglesMatthew Rubenstein d. Brandon Pierpont (ND) 6-0, 6-2DoublesKyle Peterson/Assule d. Brandon Pierpont/Joe Vellanikaran 8-6Midwest - Ohio State, Columbus, OH, July 16-20Singles Eric Langenkamp (ND) d. Bryan Griffin 6-0, 6-0 Eric Langenkamp (ND) d. Ross Gehlhausen (IUPUI) 6-0, 6-0 Eric Langenkamp (ND) d. Todd Wojtkowski (Ohio State) 6-1, 2-0, ret. Eric Langenkamp (ND) d. Alex Scott (Middlebury College) 6-2, 6-3 Eric Langenkamp (ND) d.  Chris Klingemann (Ohio State) 6-3, 5-4, ret. Ryan Preston (Vanderbilt) d.  Eric Langenkamp (ND) 6-2, 7-6 (5) - championshipSouthwest - UT-Arlington, Arlington, TX, July 23-26Singles Santiago Montoya d. Chris Raines 6-1, 6-0 Santiago Montoya d. Brian Hull 4-6, 6-1, 1-0 (10-7) Santiago Montoya d. Brett Womack 6-2, 6-7, 1-0 (10-3)Evan Bridges d.  Santiago Montoya 6-3, 7-6 - round of 16Doubles Blake Boswell/Santiago Montoya d. Bernard Lancaster/Clayton Phillips 8-2 Blake Boswell/Santiago Montoya d. Zach Butler/Zach Glankler, walkover Blake Boswell/Santiago Montoya d. Andrew Dobbs/Andrew Frye 8-4 Tommy Garrison/Matt Long d.  Blake Boswell/Santiago Montoya 8-6 - semifinalsSouthwest - Texas A&M, College Station, TX, July 30-Aug. 2Singles Santiago Montoya d. Luke Hawk 7-5, 6-4Alex Jago d.  Santiago Montoya 6-2, 6-0DoublesKelubia Mabatah/Scott Warner d. Blake Boswell/Santiago Montoya 8-6
Note: Numbers in parentheses are tournament seedings.
Professional TournamentsUSA Futures #13, Auburn, CA, June 13-19, HardSingles Qualifying[WC] Stephen Bass (USA) d. Hyung-Kwon Kim (KOR) 6-2, 7-5#668  Andrew Anderson (RSA) d. [WC] Stephen Bass (USA) 6-1, 6-3USA Futures #15, Williamsville, NY, June 27-July 3, ClaySingles QualifyingEric Langenkamp (USA) d. Brian Scharf (USA) 7-6 (1), 6-3#1148  Troy Hahn (USA) d. Eric Langenkamp (USA) 6-2, 6-2USA Futures #16, Pittsburgh, PA, July 4-10, ClaySingles QualifyingEric Langenkamp (USA) d. Jay Goldman (USA) 6-3, 6-3Eric Langenkamp (USA) d. #721  Salifu Mohammed (GHA) 6-1, 6-2#1321  Roman Borvanov (USA) d. Eric Langenkamp (USA) 6-4, 7-5USA Futures #18, Joplin, MO, July 18-24, HardSingles QualifyingBrett Helgeson (USA) d. Chadley James (RSA) 6-3, 6-3Fritz Bissell (USA) d. Brett Helgeson (USA) 2-6, 6-4, 1-0, ret.Singles Main Draw[WC] Brett Helgeson (USA) d. Gregg Hill (USA) 6-2, 4-1, ret.#642  Andrew Anderson (RSA) d. [WC] Brett Helgeson (USA) 4-6, 7-6 (5), 7-5 - round of 16Doubles Main DrawJohn Isner/Jeremy Wurtzman (USA) d. Brett Helgeson/Travis Helgeson (ND) 6-4, 6-0USA Futures #21, Kenosha, WI, August 8-14, HardSingles QualifyingEric Langenkamp (USA) d. Jeremiah Fuller (USA) 6-3, 6-2Eric Langenkamp (USA) d. Alex Cojanu (USA) 6-1, 2-6, 7-6 (6)#1360  Bjorn Munroe (BAH) d. Eric Langenkamp (USA) 6-4, 6-4GHI Bronx Tennis Classic Challenger, August 15-21, HardSingles Qualifying[WC] Stephen Bass (USA) d. #521 Toshiaki Sakai (JPN) 3-6, 6-0, 6-3#255  Nathan Healey (AUS) d. [WC] Stephen Bass (USA) 7-5, 4-6, 6-0
Note: Numbers preceding names are world rankings at time of match according to the Associationof Tennis Professionals (ATP). Numbers in parentheses are seedings. WC - wild card entry.