May 15, 2004
Virginia’s Darrin Cohen opened up the tenth game of the third set with an ace, and won the next three points to hold at love and clinch the second-round victory over Mississippi State (9-14) with a 6-3, 2-6, 6-4 win at #6 singles. Cohen’s win gave the Cavaliers (24-3) four wins in the singles portion of the match and the berth in the round of 16, which will be contested next Thursday in Tulsa, Oklahoma. This victory marks the first time in school history that the Cavaliers have advanced out of the NCAA regional, and it also marks a new record for matches won in a season, breaking the record set by the 1982 team that went 23-8.
The Cavaliers’ #2 doubles team of Doug Stewart and Cohen opened up the match with an 8-2 win. Virginia dropped the other two matches in the doubles portion to put them down 1-0 going into the singles matches.
Rylan Rizza opened up the singles matches with a win over MSU’s Jose-Carlos Pinto, going 6-1, 6-1. After Stephen Rozek lost 6-4, 6-4 to Max Fomine, Stewart rallied to close out his match, taking the tiebreak 8-6 in the first set before winning the second set 6-2 to tie the overall match at 2-2. Marko Miklo defeated Luiz Carvalho 6-2, 6-3 to give Virginia a sweep at the top three singles spots and a 3-2 lead over Mississippi State. Miklo’s win was his team-leading 12th consecutive win.
Cohen won the first set 6-3, breaking Roussel in both the sixth and eighth games of the set before holding serve in game nine. Cohen dropped the second set as Roussel won the final four games. In the decisive third set, Cohen broke Roussel in the third game to take a 2-1 lead and then lost only two points on his serve the remainder of the set, including the match-clinching tenth game.
Cohen and Miklo both won their 25th matches of the season in today’s action.
“I think it says a lot about the character of our team to respond to losing the doubles point,” said Virginia head coach Brian Boland. “I am so pleased with how hard the team fought and how well they competed out there today.”
The Cavaliers will play the winner of the North Carolina/Ohio State match, which will take place tomorrow, Sunday, May 16 in Chapel Hill.
#1 Carvalho/Girod (M) d. Rizza/Meythaler 8-6
#2 Stewart/Cohen (V) d. Ambert/Fomine 8-2
#3 Armstrong/Pinto (M) d. Miklo/Rozek 9-7
Mississippi State leads 1-0
#1 Doug Stewart (V) d. Romain Ambert, 7-6 (6), 6-2
#2 Rylan Rizza (V) d. Jose-Carlos Pinto, 6-1, 6-1
#3 Marko Miklo (V) d. Luiz Carvalho, 6-2, 6-3
#4 Max Fomine (M) d. Stephen Rozek, 6-4, 6-4
#5 Nick Meythaler (V) level with Fiorent Girod (M), 6-3, 3-6, suspended
#6 Darrin Cohen (V) d. Arnaud Roussel, 6-3, 2-6, 6-4
Virginia wins 4-2