May 15, 2004
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – The 2003-04 season for the University of Notre Dame men’s tennis team came to a conclusion Saturday morning, when #19 Tulane topped the 30th-ranked Irish 4-0 in the first round of the NCAA Division I Championship at the Beren Tennis Center on the campus of Harvard University. The Green Wave, which has not lost in more than two months, won its 10th consecutive match to improve to 19-4 on the season and move into the second round. The Irish, who led in the three matches that were abandoned, concluded the season at 15-9.
Tulane won the doubles point and each of the first three matches off the court in singles to secure the victory. The Green Wave captured wins at the bottom two doubles positions to take the match’s initial point, beating a pair of Notre Dame doubles teams that were unbeaten prior to Saturday. First off the court was the tandem of Alberto Sottocorno of Bolivia and Jacobo Hernandez of Mexico, who were victorious 8-3 at No. 3 against Irish senior Paul Hidaka (Tokyo, Japan/St. Mary’s International School) and freshman Ryan Keckley (South Bend, Ind./St. Joseph’s H.S.), who were both making their NCAA tournament debuts and were 2-0 together heading into the match.
Tulane clinched the doubles point when Ted Angelinos of Greece and Dmitriy Koch of Germany topped Notre Dame junior tri-captain Brent D’Amico (Castle Rock, Colo./St. Stephen’s Episcopal School [TX]) and sophomore Eric Langenkamp (Scarsdale, N.Y./Scarsdale H.S.) by the same score at No. 2. The Irish duo had been undefeated in three matches together prior to Saturday.
The No. 1 match was abandoned with the score tied 5-5. Irish senior tri-captains Luis Haddock (Caguas, P.R./Notre Dame H.S.) and Matthew Scott (Oakton, Va./International School of Paris) were on serve with the 12th-ranked team in college tennis, Michael Kogan of Israel and Canadian David Goulet. Haddock and Scott, who had all three of their postseason matches abandoned, completed their careers with an 18-5 record together, including 12-3 in dual-match play. Kogan and Goulet are 16-1 this season, including a current 15-match winning streak.
Kogan, ranked 11th nationally in singles and a four-time Conference USA Player of the Year, was first off in singles, defeating 70th-ranked Haddock 6-3, 6-3 at No. 1. The Israeli has won 11 in a row, dating back to March 9, to improve to 17-4 this season. Haddock finished his career with a 91-42 (.684) singles record, including 51-30 (.630) in dual matches and 16 victories over ranked opponents. He was 20-12 in 2003-04, 12-6 in dual matches. His 70-41 (.631) doubles record make Haddock just the fifth player under head coach Bob Bayliss to win at least 90 singles matches and 70 doubles contests during his career. His singles victories are the ninth-highest sum in the Bayliss era.
Koch, ranked 46th, put Tulane within a point of victory by beating Scott 6-2, 6-4 at No. 2. The German is 14-3 this season, while the Irish tri-captain finished his career with an 83-40 (.675) singles record, including 54-23 (.701) in dual matches. He was 19-14 this season, highlighted by three wins over top-65 players last September.
Hernandez won his 14th consecutive match to clinch the Green Wave’s triumph. The Mexican beat Irish rookie Barry King (Dublin, Ireland/Gonzaga College) 6-4, 6-4 at No. 5 to improve to 16-4 on the season. Notre Dame ended the season with just one victory in the eight matches in which it was beaten at No. 5 singles. King had a five-match winning streak snapped but still finished his first collegiate campaign with a 17-11 (13-8 dual) record.
The Irish held leads in the matches at Nos. 3, 4, and 6 when they were abandoned. At No. 4, D’Amico was on the verge of victory. After Goulet won the first set 6-2, the Irish tri-captain struck back by taking the second 6-1 and was up a service break, 4-2, in the decisive frame.
The No. 3 match also was in a third set. Notre Dame freshman Stephen Bass (Bronxville, N.Y./Iona Preparatory School) won the first set 7-5, but Angelinos took the second 6-2. Bass, who was 10-0 in three-set affairs in his rookie season, had won the first game of the third set. He finished with a 22-7 record, including 16-5 in dual-match play.
Langenkamp won the first set 7-5 at No. 6 against Sottocorno, but the Bolivian was up a service break at 4-2 in the second. Langenkamp finished 2003-04 with a 20-5 mark, including 11-3 in dual action.
The Green Wave, one of the tournament’s No. 17-32 seeds, will take on the winner of the first-round match between 16th-seeded and 21st-ranked Harvard and Quinnipiac.
Tulane, which features no Americans on its 10-player roster, won the contest between the teams that shared the 1959 NCAA championship, when the format awarded points to teams based upon individual performance in the national singles and doubles tournaments. The schools have met in dual-match play five times, always on neutral courts, with the Green Wave taking three of those decisions. Notre Dame won the previous meeting, a 4-0 affair in the opening round of the 2001 Blue/Gray National Tennis Classic.
The Irish fell in the first round of the NCAAs for the first time since 1999 and lost for the 15th consecutive time against a top-25 opponent.
Notre Dame was playing at Harvard for NCAA action for the second time in its last three appearances in the national tournament. The Irish are one of only a dozen teams to have participated in 13 of the last 14 NCAA Championships.
All seven of Notre Dame’s non-conference losses in 2004 came against teams ranked in the national top 30 both at the time of the match and currently.
Notre Dame will lose four seniors to graduation: Haddock, Scott, Hidaka, and Ben Hatten (Potomac, Md./Winston Churchill H.S.). Haddock and Scott were four-year monogram winners who ascended to the top of the Irish singles lineup last season. Both served as captains over the past two years and moved into the No. 1 doubles position midway through this spring. Hidaka became a regular in Notre Dame’s doubles lineup for the first time this season, starting much of the spring at No. 3, while Hatten earned his first monogram a season ago as a key player in the Irish doubles mix.
The other 11 players on the Irish roster, including six who have been regular starters over the past two years, will return for Notre Dame in 2004-05. The Irish also will welcome a pair of freshmen, Sheeva Parbhu (Omaha, Neb./Millard North H.S.) and Andrew Roth (Houston, Texas/The Tenney School).
There is a possibility that Haddock’s season could continue, as he is the fifth alternate for the 64-player NCAA Singles Championship, slated for May 26-31 in Tulsa, Okla. If he gains entry into the event, www.und.com will feature full coverage of his play.
[17-32] #19 Tulane 4, [33-48] #30 Notre Dame 0
No. 1 #11 Michael Kogan (T) d. #70 Luis Haddock (ND) 6-3, 6-3
No. 2 #46 Dmitriy Koch (T) d. Matthew Scott (ND) 6-2, 6-4
No. 3 Stephen Bass (ND) led Ted Angelinos (T) 7-5, 2-6, 1-0, abandoned
No. 4 Brent D’Amico (ND) led David Goulet (T) 2-6, 6-1, 4-2, abandoned
No. 5 Jacobo Hernandez (T) d. Barry King (ND) 6-4, 6-4
No. 6 Eric Langenkamp (ND) led Alberto Sottocorno (T) 7-5, 2-4, abandoned
Order of finish: 1, 2, 5*
No. 1 Haddock/Scott (ND) vs. #12 Goulet/Kogan (T) 5-5, abandoned
No. 2 *Angelinos/Koch (T) d. D’Amico/Langenkamp (ND) 8-3
No. 3 Hernandez/Sottocorno (T) d. Paul Hidaka/Ryan Keckley (ND) 8-3
Order of finish: 3, 2*