Feb. 17, 2002
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The seventh-ranked University of Notre Dame men’s tennis team registered a 7-0 victory over #53 Purdue Sunday afternoon in the Eck Tennis Pavilion. The Irish did not drop a match in singles or doubles in moving to 9-3 on the season. Purdue fell to 2-3. Notre Dame will return to action Wednesday, taking on #62 Michigan State in the Eck Tennis Pavilion at 4:00 p.m.
The Irish swept the doubles matches, a feat accomplished by Purdue in last year’s match between the two teams. On Sunday, senior Aaron Talarico (Laguna Beach, Fla.) and freshman Brent D’Amico (Centennial, Colo.) got the Irish off to a good start with an 8-3 victory at No. 3 — their fifth consecutive triumph. Seniors Casey Smith (Leawood, Kan.) and Javier Taborga (La Paz, Bolivia), the sixth-ranked doubles team in the nation, clinched the doubles point for Notre Dame with an 8-4 win at No. 1 over the 23rd-ranked pair of Scott Mayer and Dan Swan. Another team of seniors, James Malhame (Douglaston, N.Y.) and Ashok Raju (Morgantown, W. Va.), completed the Irish sweep with an 8-6 victory at No. 2.
Notre Dame swept all six singles matches for the third time this season. Talarico finished first with a 6-3, 6-3 win at No. 3 over Penn High School graduate Troy Havens. Sophomore Matthew Scott (Paris, France) improved to 12-0 this spring and 20-2 overall with a 6-4, 6-3 win at No. 5. Senior Andrew Laflin (Tampa, Fla.) clinched the Irish victory with a 6-0, 6-4 triumph at No. 6, improving to 9-0 in singles this season. He has won 23 of his last 25 matches. After the outcome was determined, 88th-ranked Smith defeated #101 Andrew Wakefield 7-6, 6-2 at No. 2 and sophomore Luis Haddock-Morales (Caguas, Puerto Rico) won 7-6, 4-6, 6-4 at No. 4 before Taborga, ranked 95th in singles, won 3-6, 7-5, 6-4 at No. 1.
The win for Taborga improved his record to 8-1 at No. 1 singles and helped his bid to make a big jump from his No. 95 position in the national singles rankings when they are released again next Wednesday. He is 10-2 in dual-match play and 17-7 overall, including victories over defending NCAA singles and doubles champion Matias Boeker of Georgia (No. 1 in preseason singles rankings), #20 Jeremy Wurtzman of Ohio State, #21 Alex Hartman of Mississippi, #24 Michael Yani of Duke, #37 Westerman, #74 Jonathan Endrikat of UC-Irvine, #99 Ben Cox of Michigan and then-#97 Prakash Armitraj of USC — with all eight wins coming in straight sets. He has won 14 of his last 17 singles matches and all three of his losses in that span were to ranked players (#2 Harsh Mankad of Minnesota, #7 Al Garland of Pepperdine and #78 Aleksey Zharinov of Minnesota). Out of his seven defeats this season, five came to nationally-ranked players and three were in match tiebreakers.
The win marked the 12th straight for Notre Dame over Purdue and the 42nd for the Irish over the Boilermakers in the 80-year history of the program (with just eight losses). Only Marquette has been defeated more times by Notre Dame in men’s tennis than Purdue, with the Golden Eagles dropping all 44 matches against the Irish. Notre Dame has also defeated Western Michigan 42 times.
#7 Notre Dame 7, #53 Purdue 0
No. 1: #95 Javier Taborga (ND) d. Scott Mayer (P) 3-6, 7-5, 6-4
No. 2: #88 Casey Smith (ND) d. #101 Andrew Wakefield (P) 7-6, 6-2
No. 3: Aaron Talarico (ND) d. Troy Havens (P) 6-3, 6-3
No. 4: #83 Luis Haddock-Morales (ND) d. Laith Al-Agba (P) 7-6, 4-6, 6-4
No. 5: Matthew Scott (ND) d. Sounak Chatterjee (P) 6-4, 6-3
No. 6: Andrew Laflin (ND) d. Seth McKinley (P) 6-0, 6-4
No. 1: #6 Smith/Taborga (ND) d. #23 Mayer/Dan Swan (P) 8-4
No. 2: James Malhame/Ashok Raju (ND) d. Al-Agba/Carl McCafferty (P) 8-6
No. 3: Brent D’Amico/Talarico (ND) d. Chatterjee/Wakefield (P) 8-3