March 17, 1999

  • Notre Dame looks for Blue-Gray title after finishing second last two years
  • Sachire wins 100th career singles match
  • Patterson riding eight-match singles winning streaks

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The 26th-ranked Notre Dame men’s tennis team spent its spring break in Miami, Fla., and came away with a 5-2 win over Hurricanes. The Irish will travel to the Blue-Gray National Classic this week in Montgomery, Ala., Thurs.-Sun., March 18-21.

THIS WEEK FOR THE IRISH: The Irish head to Lagoon Park in Montgomery, Ala., this week for the 16-team Blue-Gray National Classic, which runs Thurs.-Sun., March 18-21. In addition to Notre Dame, second-ranked Illinois, 10th-ranked SMU, 16th-ranked Harvard, 19th-ranked Texas A&M, 22nd-ranked VCU, 28th-ranked Alabama, 30th-ranked Tulane, Auburn, Boise State, Middle Tennessee State, North Carolina, Northwestern, Virginia, Wake Forest and William & Mary will be participating.

Notre Dame has advanced to the championship match in each of the last two years. In 1998, the 21st-ranked Irish beat Tulane, New Mexico and Harvard before falling 4-3 to Boise State in the final. In 1997, the 20th-ranked Irish beat UAB, VCU and Illinois before losing 4-2 to South Alabama in the championship match. Notre Dame finished 1-2 in 1994, 1995, 1996 after winning the title in 1993, beating New Mexico, Mississippi State, Florida and Alabama in the process.

IRISH BEAT HURRICANES FOR SIXTH STRAIGHT WIN: Notre Dame played its first outdoor match of the year and came away with a 5-2 win over Miami on Thurs., March 11, to record its sixth consecutive win. The Irish won the doubles point and won four of six singles to beat 43rd-ranked Miami in front of a boisterous Hurricane home crowd. Irish freshman Javier Taborga (La Paz, Bolivia) played in his first career dual singles match and won 7-5, 6-4 over Joel Berman at No. 6 singles. He also teamed with freshman Aaron Talarico (Laguna Beach, Calif.) to clinch the doubles point with an 8-6 win over Lieberman and Lindqvist. Junior All-American Ryan Sachire (Canfield, Ohio), the second-ranked singles player in the country, beat Miami’s Jamin Thompson 6-3, 6-3 at No. 1 singles and teamed with senior Brian Patterson (Falmouth, Maine) to beat Tarik El Bassouni and Ralph Hilt 8-2 at No. 1 doubles. Sophomore Matt Daly (Wellesley, Mass.) clinched the win for Notre Dame with a 6-4, 6-2 win over Mark Arrowsmith at No. 3 singles. Patterson rallied to beat Johan Lindqvist 6-7 (8), 6-1, 6-1 at No. 2 singles.

Miami’s Jose Lieberman and Arpad Odry won at Nos. 4 and 5 singles for the Hurricanes’ two points. The contest was a rematch of the last three BIG EAST championship title matches, won by Miami in 1997 and 1998 and by Notre Dame in 1996. The Irish will return to Miami for the 1999 BIG EAST championship, to held at the Neil Schiff Tennis Center April 22-25.

SACHIRE REACHES CENTURY MARK: Ryan Sachire’s 6-3, 6-3 win over Miami’s Jamin Thompson marked his 100th career singles win at Notre Dame, becoming the first junior to reach 100 wins since former All-American and No. 1 nationally-ranked collegiate singles player David DiLucia reached the century mark as a junior in 1991. DiLucia ended his career by leading the Irish to the 1992 NCAA championship title match with a 146-33 career record. Sachire currently has a 100-28 (.781) record and a 29-5 record in 1999.

BAYLISS REACHES 500TH WIN: Irish head coach Bob Bayliss became the 11th active men’s tennis coach to record his 500th career win with a 7-0 win over Northwestern on Feb. 20. Bayliss is in his 12th year as head coach of the Irish, compiling a 224-99 (.693) record at Notre Dame and a career mark of 506-193 (.724), the sixth-best winning percentage among active men’s coaches. He has guided the Irish to NCAA championship appearances in each of the last eight years, including an NCAA second-place finish in 1992. The Richmond, Va., native, and 1966 graduate of Richmond has been named ITA national coach of the year in 1992 and ITA regional coach of the year three times. The five-time conference coach of year has coached his players to 12 All-America honors in his 11 years at Notre Dame, with junior Ryan Sachire his latest All-American.

PATTERSON WINS EIGHT STRAIGHT: Senior captain Brian Patterson has not lost a singles match since dropping a 7-5, 2-6, 7-5 decision to Duke’s Pedro Escudero on Feb. 13. Since that lost, Patterson has won eight consecutive matches to improve his record to 14-6 and 12-2 in 1999 dual matches. His career singles record stands at 79-38 in his three-plus years at Notre Dame. A two-time NCAA doubles participant, Patterson’s doubles record is nearly identical to his singles slate at 78-39, just one win behind his singles mark. His singles record in dual matches is 60-29 for his career with a 32-7 mark since the beginning of his junior year.

SACHIRE SOLID AT NO. 2 RANKING: Ryan Sachire remains second in the latest Intercollegiate Tennis Association rankings, released by the ITA on March 9. Sachire’s No. 2 spot marks the highest ranking for an Irish singles player since David DiLucia finished the 1992 regular season as the No. 1 player in the country. Sachire, who is 29-5 in singles and 13-1 in dual matches in ’99, entered the 1998 fall season ranked No. 8 in the preseason but vaulted five spots to three based on his fall performance. His jump from three to two came in the Feb. 16 ranking after winning the Rolex National Intercollegiate Indoor Championships singles consolation. Since taking over the No. 2 spot behind Harvard’s James Blake, Sachire has compiled a 8-2 record, losing just one set.

LAFLIN UNBEATEN IN 1999: Irish freshman Andrew Laflin remains perfect in 1999 with an 11-0 record. The lefty won his first seven matches without dropping a set before winning in three sets against both Boise State and Ohio State. Laflin played at No. 5 singles in his first match of 1999 before winning five matches at No. 6 singles. Since first moving up to the No. 4 position in the Iowa match, Laflin has gone 5-0. His overall singles record stands at 18-5, and he boasts a 15-0 record when he wins the first set. Of his 11 wins in 1999, three have clinched match wins for the Irish.

SACHIRE CONTINUES DUAL MATCH SUCCESS: Ryan Sachire entered his junior year with a 37-10 dual match record in his first two years and has improved that mark to 52-11 with his 15-1 mark this year. Three of his wins have come against top 10 players. His overall singles record is 28-5 this year with 16 wins against ranked opponents. He enters the Miami match having won his last seven matches, including the last four in straight sets.

DALY ON A ROLL: Sophomore Matt Daly has won five out of his last six matches after starting off 1999 with a 2-3 record. Of the eight matches Daly has won in ’99, three have clinched wins for the Irish. He entered the spring dual match season after compiling an 11-2 record in the fall, with one of the losses coming to teammate Casey Smith (Leawood, Kan.). His overall record of 19-7 includes a 17-0 mark in matches when he wins the first set.

SACHIRE WINS ROLEX CONSOLATION SINGLES: Ryan Sachire rallied from a first-round loss to win the singles consolation draw at the Rolex National Intercollegiate Indoor Championships, the third leg of the Intercollegiate Tennis Association collegiate grand slam. After Virginia Tech’s 23rd-ranked Adam Marchetti bounced the third-seeded Sachire 7-5, 6-3 in the first round, Sachire won four straight matches to win the consolation singles. He beat small college champion Mario Toledo of Georgia Perimeter 6-0, 6-1, Tulsa’s 53rd-ranked Nenad Toroman 6-2, 6-4, sixth-ranked Esteban Carril of TCU 7-5, 4-6, 6-2 and 25th-ranked Daniel Andersson of VCU 6-2, 6-3 in his four consolation matches.

Sachire’s latest grand slam success comes after he advanced to the final of the Intercollegiate Tennis Association All-American Championships Oct. 15-18, 1998, in Austin, Texas, the second of the four ITA collegiate grand slam events, before losing 6-3, 7-6 (7-2) to Harvard’s James Blake, currently the No. 1 player in the country. Sachire became just the second Notre Dame men’s tennis player to reach the final of a collegiate grand slam, joining David DiLucia in 1992. Sachire reached the final by rallying for a 6-7 (6-8), 6-3, 6-4 semifinal win over Washington’s unseeded and 21st-ranked Robert Kendrick. The Canfield, Ohio, native and former Canfield High School standout was one of eight seeds in the 64-player draw at the ITA All-American Championships. He reached the quarterfinals of the tournament last year as a sophomore. Sachire finished with a 5-1 record in the tournament and posted straight-set wins over Texas A&M’s Shuon Madden, Northwestern’s 64th-ranked Doug Bohaboy, Miami’s 46th-ranked Ivan Rodrigo and Stanford’s 30th-ranked Alex Kim to reach the semifinals.

IRISH FACE TOUGH SLATE: The Irish have played nine matches against ranked teams and two matches against top 10 teams already in 1999 and should add to that title with the talented field at the Blue-Gray Classic. In all, Notre Dame will play at least 12 matches against ranked teams in 1999, including seven ranked teams at home.

Sachire Success

Ryan Sachire spent the summer of 1998 with the USTA Summer All-American team, traveling the pro circuit. He won a futures tournament in College Station, Texas, and reached the finals of the doubles event at a satellite tournament in Springfield, Mo. Here is where Sachire stands during the dual-match season of his junior year:

  2  ITA national ranking 52  career dual-match singles wins100  career singles wins704  ATP Tour world ranking   

Intercollegiate Tennis Association Rankings

Team    This  Last  School           TotalRank  Rank  1.   T5.  UCLA             525  2.   T5.  Illinois *       517  3.    1.  Stanford         510  4.  T10.  Duke *           505  5.    2.  Georgia          495  6.    4.  Mississippi      488  7.   19.  Baylor           476  8.    7.  Texas *          466  9.   18.  Washington       464 10.  T10.  SMU              459 11.    9.  South Carolina   453 12.    8.  Pepperdine       443T13.   17.  Arizona State    438T13.   15.  USC              438 15.   12.  Tennessee        424 16.   16.  Harvard          422T17.    3.  Mississippi St.  421T17.   13.  Florida          421 19.   14.  Texas A&M        401 20.   19.  LSU              397 21.   26.  Kentucky *       367T22.   25.  California       363T22.   27.  VCU              363T24.   28.  San Diego State  349T24.   23.  Minnesota        349T26.   24   Notre Dame       348T26.   22.  Fresno State     348

Other Notre Dame opponents

 33.   37.  Northwestern     285 35.   37.  Purdue           278T43.   53.  Miami (Fla.)     216T43.   59.  Michigan         216T55.   43.  Boise State      159 63.   NR   William & Mary    95 65.   54.  Michigan State    83T75.   63.  Wisconsin         36T75.   NR   Indiana           36

Singles Release

This  Last    Name            SchoolRank  Rank 1.     1.  James Blake          Harvard 2.     2.  Ryan Sachire         Notre Dame 3.     3.  Robert Kendrick      Washington 4.     7.  Oliver Freelove      Illinois 5.     8.  Ryan Wolters         Stanford 6.     6.  Francisco Rodriguez  Alabama 7.     5.  Esteban Carril       TCU 8.    12.  Hirsham Hemeda       Georgia9.    T24.  Jeff Morrison        Florida10.    26.  Ignacio Hirigoyen    SMU11.    14.  Jean-Noel Grinda     UCLA12.     4.  Peter Handoyo        Tennessee13.    20.  KJ Hippensteel       Stanford14.    13.  Daniel Andersson     VCU15.    21.  Marco Baron          Mississippi State16.    11.  Aaron Marchetti      Virginia Tech17.    10.  Guillaume Legat      South Carolina18.   T15.  Adam Marchetti       Virginia Tech19.   T18.  Tom Chicoine         Minnesota20.    48.  Doug Root            Duke