Sept. 20, 1998

HOUSTON – The Notre Dame mens tennis team wrapped up its first tournament of the year with a singles winner at the Rice Invitational on Sunday in Houston, Texas. Irish freshman Casey Smith won the B Flight singles when Csongor Bibza was force to retire after Smith won the second set 7-6. Bibza had won the first set 6-4. Freshman Andrew Laflin, who lost to Bibza in the first round, won the consolation draw with a 6-1, 7-6 win over Texas A&Ms Gonzalez Anderson. Sophomore Matt Daly finished third after beating Rices Prakash Venkataraman 6-1, 7-6.

In Flight A singles, senior Andy Warford won the consolation draw with a 6-1, 6-1 win over Texas A&Ms Cody Hubbell who had beaten Irish sophomore Luke Warford on Saturday.

Junior Rob Warn won the D Flight consolation when sophomore teammate Ashok Raju was forced to retire after losing the first set 6-3. Freshman Aaron Talarico lost a 6-0, 6-4 match to Texas A&Ms Jarin Skube in the finals of the D Flight singles.

The Irish return to the courts Sept. 24-27, at the T. Rowe Price National Clay Court Championships in Baltimore, Md., first of four legs of the college tennis Grand Slam. Junior All-American and eight-ranked Ryan Sachire will compete in the singles draw and will team with senior Brian Patterson in the doubles competition.