Oct. 10, 2008
TULSA, Okla. – Senior Brett Helgeson’s (Overland Park, Kan./Blue Valley West) run in the main draw of the ITA All American Championships ended with a loss to the number-one seed, Oleksandr Nedevyesov of Oklahoma State (6-2, 6-2) in the round-of-16 play on Friday.
In his first career appearance in the ITA All-American Championships, Helgeson became Notre Dame’s first men’s tennis player since Javier Taborga, in 2000, to advance to the round-of-16.
To get to the round-of-16, Helgeson first defeated junior Richard Wire of Stanford. Helgeson, #25 in the preseason ITA rankings, dropped the first set, 5-7, but battled back to win a close second set, 7-5, followed by a third set win, 6-1, over Wire. In his second match of day one, Helgeson defeated 12th seeded Nate Schnugg of Georgia. Helgeson dropped the first set of the match, 4-6, before winning two straight, 7-5, 6-4, to advance to the round-of-16.
The ITA All-American Championships is one of the three most prestigious events on the college tennis circuit. It includes 64 of the top players in all of men’s college tennis. Sheeva Parbhu ’08 played in the event for the Irish last season. He was knocked out in the first round to 22nd-ranked Bojan Szumanski of Texas Tech, 6-3, 6-0. Parbhu also dropped his consolation match to 38th-ranked Clancy Shields of Boise State, 6-3, 6-3. Ryan Sachire and David DiLucia had the best performances at the ITA All American Championships among Notre Dame entrants as both fell in the title match, Sachire in 1998 and DiLucia in 1991. Dating back to 1989, the Irish have sent 12 entrants – on 19 occasions – to the event.
While Helgeson is taking part in the ITA All-American Championships, his teammates are hosting the 22nd annual Tom Fallon Invitational, named after the 31-year Irish head coach. The three-day event began on Friday, October 10 at Notre Dame’s Courtney Tennis Center. This year’s field includes Ball State, Harvard, Michigan State, Notre Dame, Western Michigan and Wisconsin.