No. 1 Cavaliers Blank No. 32 VCU 7-0
CHARLOTTESVILLE The top-ranked Virginia men’s tennis team posted its second consecutive home shutout, blanking No. 32 VCU 7-0 Friday night at the Boyd Tinsley Courts at the Boar’s Head Sports Club. With the victory, the Cavaliers improve to 4-0 on the season.
“I was pleased with the hard work and improvement of every guy on the team this week leading up to this match and it certainly paid off,” said Virginia head coach Brian Boland. “VCU is an excellent team, one that has top ten talent, and might be the best overall team we have played this season. I thought we did an tremendous job of playing at a higher level than we did last week.”
The Cavaliers took the early advantage over the Rams by winning a tight doubles point. Virginia quickly got an edge as the nation’s top ranked doubles team, Somdev Devvarman (Chennai, India) and Treat Huey (Alexandria, Va.), cruised to an 8-2 win over Sebastien Ripoll and Emil Lindgren at No. 1 doubles. The other two doubles contests went to tiebreakers. At No. 2 doubles, the VCU team of Thibaut Charron and Martin Schulhauser rallied from down a break, including fighting off several match points against, to post a 9-8 win over No. 28 Sanam Singh (Chandigarh, India) and Michael Shabaz (Fairfax, Va.) at No. 2 doubles. At No. 3 doubles, neither side could break serve the entire match, but the No. 17 ranked Cavalier team of Lee Singer (Laguna Niguel, Calif.) and Ted Angelinos (Athens, Greece) won the tiebreaker against Damien Lacombe and Stepan Siska to give UVa the opening point.
Devvarman and Huey’s victory was their 96th career win as a team, setting a new Cavalier record. The previous record was 95 set by Brian Vahaly and Huntley Montgomery (1998-01).
In singles there was far less drama. The Cavaliers easily won the first set in each match and quickly closed out five straight set wins. Singh won the race to see which Cavalier finished first, completing a 6-3, 6-3 win over Alex Israel at No. 4 singles. Seconds later, Houston Barrick (Brentwood, Tenn.) gave Virginia its third point of the night with his 6-1, 6-4 win over Ripoll at the No. 6 position. Angelinos clinched the dual match with his 6-1, 6-4 win over Lindgren at No. 5 singles. Huey made the score 5-0 as he defeated Schulhauser 6-4, 6-1 at No. 2 singles. At No. 1 singles, top-ranked Devvarman was the fifth Cavalier to finish, despite only losing two games, downing Charron 6-1, 6-1.
The final match on the courts was at No. 3 singles, where Shabaz faced No. 33 ranked Lacombe. The Cavalier freshman easily won the first set, 6-1, but Lacombe rallied from down a break in the second set to win it in a tiebreaker. In the superbreaker, Shabaz jumped out to a 5-0 lead and rolled to a 10-2 victory, posting his first career dual match win and his first against a ranked opponent.
“It feels good to get the win,” said Shabaz. “To beat a player like Lacombe gives me a lot of confidence. We still have a long season to go, so its important for everyone to have a lot of confidence since you never know when you are going to be counted on to pull out a win for the team.”
“I was very happy with Michael’s performance against a top-level player,” said Boland. “He is finally back to 100 percent after the finger injury that hampered him before the season. This was the first week this spring that he was able to practice every day and I think that showed in his play tonight.”
The Cavaliers won the match without the services of Dominic Inglot (London, England), the nation’s No. 3 ranked singles player. With the depth on his roster, Boland has elected to periodically rest players to keep everyone on the roster fresh and rested.
Virginia will travel this weekend to meet No. 21 Michigan Sunday in Ann Arbor. The Wolverines posted a 4-3 win over No. 16 Pepperdine on Friday. Match time is noon.
No. 1 Virginia 7, No. 32 VCU 0
1. #1 Devvarman/Huey (UVa) def. Ripoll/Lindgren (VCU) 8-2
2. Charron/Schulhauser (VCU) def. #28 Singh/Shabaz (UVa) 9-8(4)
3. #17 Angelinos/Singer (UVa) def. Siska/Lacombe (VCU) 9-8(5)
1. #1 Somdev Devvarman (UVa) def. Thibaut Charron (VCU) 6-1, 6-1
2. #12 Treat Huey (UVa) def. Martin Schulhauser (VCU) 6-4, 6-1
3. Michael Shabaz (UVa) def. #33 Damien Lacombe (VCU) 6-1, 6-7, 10-2
4. Sanam Singh (UVa) def. Alex Israel (VCU) 6-3, 6-3
5. Ted Angelinos (UVa) def. Emil Lindgren (VCU) 6-1, 6-4
6. #83 Houston Barrick (UVa) def. Sebastien Ripoll (VCU) 6-1, 6-4
Order of Finish: Doubles-1,2,3 Singles- 4,6,5,2,1,3
Records: Virginia (4-0), VCU (4-1)