Senior Stephen Bass.

No. 4 Notre Dame Men's Tennis Opens BIG EAST Championship With 4-0 Victory Over Villanova

April 20, 2007

TAMPA, Fla. – The top-seeded and No. 4 ranked Notre Dame men’s tennis team opened play in the BIG EAST Conference Championship on Friday morning with a convincing 4-0 victory over eighth-seeded Villanova at the USF Varsity Tennis Courts. The Irish, who have reached the title match in all 11 years of league membership, will take on fifth-seeded St. John’s Saturday at 9:00 a.m. in the semifinals.

With the victory, Notre Dame improves to 22-3 on the season, while the Wildcats drop to 5-11.

The Irish jumped out to a 1-0 lead after capturing the all-important doubles point. The senior duo of Stephen Bass (Bronxville, NY) and Ryan Keckley (South Bend, IN) were the first off the court in doubles, recording an 8-2 rout of Dimitri Chimerakis and Sean Daly at No. 1. The duo is now 4-0 on the year overall and 4-0 in dual matches. They also improved to 5-1 for their career.

Notre Dame clinched the doubles point at No. 3 following the victory from senior Barry King (Dublin, Ireland) and junior Andrew Roth. The tandem knocked off Alex Leeser and Charlie Farmer, 8-5. King and Roth now stand 5-0 on the season and 4-0 in dual action.

The No. 2 doubles team of junior Sheeva Parbhu (Omaha, NE) and sophomore Brett Helgeson (Overland Park, KS) led their match 6-4 when it was halted.

The Irish quickly eliminated any doubt toward the final result of the match. Notre Dame took the first three singles matches, all in straight sets.

Roth continued his torrid stretch at No. 6. He registered his second “double bagel” victory of the season. Roth got past Sumanth Chittajallu, 6-0, 6-0. He extended his winning streak to a season-high five matches. Roth has dropped a total of nine games over the hot streak. He now stands 23-11 overall and 15-6 in dual matches.

Helgeson followed with a dominating win over Scott Fahrendorf, 6-0, 6-2, at No. 3 singles. He improves to 28-7 overall and 20-4 in dual action.

Bass clinched the match for Notre Dame at No. 1 singles. He defeated Sean Daly, 6-0, 6-4, for his team-leading 32nd victory of the season. Bass (32-9) now stands 21-3 in dual action, including 19-3 at the top spot of the Irish lineup.

1. Stephen Bass (ND) def. Sean Daly (VU); 6-0, 6-4
2. Sheeva Parbhu (ND) led Brian Maher (VU); 6-2, 3-0
3. Brett Helgeson (ND) def. Scott Fahrendorf (VU); 6-0, 6-2
4. Barry King (ND) led Dimitri Chimerakis (VU); 6-1, 4-1
5. Ryan Keckley (ND) led Brett Tobin (VU); 6-2, 4-0
6. Andrew Roth (ND) def. Sumanth Chittajallu (VU); 6-0, 6-0
Order of Finish: 6,3,1 * indicates clinching victory

1. Keckley/Bass (ND) def. Chimerakis/Daly (VU); 8-2
2. Parbhu/Helgeson (ND) led Fahrendorf/Maher (VU); 6-4
3. King/Roth (ND) def. Leeser/Farmer (VU); 8-5
Order of Finish: 1,3 * indicates clinching victory

— ND —