Casey Watt and the Irish will face Louisville on Saturday afternoon.

Irish To Face BIG EAST Rival Louisville

April 9, 2010

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The Fighting Irish men’s tennis team will play host to BIG EAST rival Louisville at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 10. The match will be played outdoors at Notre Dame’s Courtney Tennis Center, weather permitting.

The Irish, who are ranked 36th, enter the match with an 11-10 record. The Irish have dropped their last two matches, including a 6-1 loss at 12th-ranked Texas A&M and 7-0 home loss to second-ranked Ohio State. But prior to those two matches, the Irish knocked off SMU, 5-2, and Northwestern, 5-2, to stand at 2-2 over their last four contests.

Live stats of Notre Dame’s showdown with 16th-ranked Louisville will be provided through, where a complete recap of the match will be posted at the contest’s conclusion.

Louisville Series Breakdown
Notre Dame leads the brief all-time series with Louisville, 8-4. Notre Dame won the teams’ first four meetings, which took place from 1957-1988. Since 2005, the teams have met eight times, with Notre Dame and Louisville each recording four wins in those eight more recent matches.

Most recently, Louisville won both meetings between the two teams in 2009 by identical 4-3 scores. In 2009 regular season action, the Irish fell at Louisville on April 11. The Irish faced a 2-0 deficit in that match but wins by David Anderson (Sandwich, Mass./Sandwich) at fifth singles, Casey Watt (Gibsonia, Pa./Pine-Richland) at third singles and Tyler Davis (Nashville, Tenn./Father Ryan) at sixth singles eventually tied the match at 3-3. But Austen Childs downed Brett Helgeson ’09 at No. 1 singles (6-0, 2-6, 6-4) to end Notre Dame’s comeback hopes.

The teams then met in the third place match of the 2009 BIG EAST Championship on April 19 in Tampa, Fla. Louisville jumped out to a 3-0 lead in that match and held on for its second consecutive win over the Irish. At sixth singles, Davis got the Irish on the board with a win over Robert Hall 6-4, 6-3. Anderson edged the Irish closer with a win at fifth singles over Andrew Carter 6-3, 7-6 (7-5) and Watt then tied the overall match at 3-3 with a three-set win over Simon Childs, 6-3, 4-6, 6-3. But the comeback fell just short as Daniel Stahl (Bethesda, Md./Walt Whitman) fell at fourth singles to Alejandro Caligari, 4-6, 7-5, 6-1.

Scouting The Cardinals
Louisville enters Saturday’s match with a 16-5 record and ranked 16th. Like the Irish, they enter the weekend with a 2-2 mark in their last four matches including home wins over USF (4-3) and Virginia Commonwealth (5-1) and road losses against Texas A&M (7-0) and Tennessee (7-0).

Appearing at 30th in the ITA singles rankings and 24th in doubles, junior Austen Childs leads Louisville into Saturday’s contest as the reigning BIG EAST men’s tennis Player of the Week. He has posted a 13-3 mark at No. 1 singles. Childs is joined on the 24th-ranked double team by junior Simon Childs. Louisville also has the 25th-ranked doubles tandem in Calligari and Simon Childs.

The Irish are in the midst of a three match stretch in which they will have played #12 Texas A&M, #2 Ohio State and #16 Louisville in consecutive matches … the Irish have faced a ranked opponent in 15 of their 21 matches thus far (the Campbell/ITA rankings slot the top-75 teams) … Stephen Havens was named the BIG EAST Men’s Tennis Player of the Week on March 31 … Notre Dame’s win over MTSU (4-2) in the opening round of the 2010 Blue Gray tournament marked the 700th career win for head coach Bobby Bayliss (now 703-307-1/41 seasons).