NCAA Championships Blog
Throughout the Cavaliers’ trip to Tulsa for the 2008 NCAA Championships, the members of the team will take turns writing passages in the blog. Check in throughout the week for the latest news, stories, and anecdotes from the trip.
TUESDAY, MAY 13
Finally it’s here, the trip we have been waiting for and working towards the whole year. The regular season is over, ACCs done and we have gotten through the regional. We had a pact that no one will say the “T-word” (Tulsa) until we made it there and now all of us are heading to T-town for the Sweet 16. So we had practice this morning at 11 a.m. as our flight wasn’t until 5 in the evening. All of us had a good two-hour practice and everyone seems ready to go for the big dance. After practice I had to rush back home as I still had not packed. Teddy had to do a lot of packing too, and as always he had left everything to the last minute. Ha Ha. Sorry Ted.
So now all of us are FINALLY packed and ready to go. As Houston decided to shift his whole house into his car, we were short on car space and the three seniors and Dom had to squeeze into Treat’s car. As a result they were late in arriving to the airport. I got there with Houston, and Michael rolled in, in his mini car (which is the only way I can describe it as it is the smallest thing I have ever seen).
So we get on the plane, but not without Teddy and Somdev almost missing the flight. We get to Atlanta where we have a three-hour layover. We get something to eat, including Ben and Jerry’s for Treat, Somdev, Teddy and I. By the way, Teddy had a triple scoop in the biggest waffle cone ever to be seen. Yes he likes sweets. Anyway we get on our second flight and finally arrive in Tulsa at 10:30 p.m. We have a charter bus waiting for us with Santa Claus as our driver, courtesy coach Boland. So Santa decided to have pizzas and Gatorade waiting for us upon our arrival at the hotel (maybe coach Boland had a hand in that too.) Everyone ate pizza and then hydrated. After that Houston and Michael decide to go work out at midnight. Everyone else got ready for bed. Well done Barrick and Shabaz. That’s about it and its getting late so I am going to bed. Think Michigan.
– Sanam Singh
THURSDAY, MAY 15
Well another day in beautiful Tulsa has come and gone. It feels like we have been here forever. Tomorrow is finally the day that we have all been waiting for all season. It seemed just like yesterday that we lost a hard fought match to Georgia in the semifinals of the NCAA Tournament. We are all really antsy to get the tournament started.
This morning Coach Boland decided to take us on a jog around the block. We were all pretty sure that he had absolutely no idea where he was going. After we ran, we headed to the lobby for breakfast. Since I hate eggs, I had to scrap together a decent breakfast. I ended up eating a chicken wrap and a cinnamon roll (probably not the healthiest thing in the world). At about 11 a.m. we headed to Southern Hills to hit some. I don’t know how many readers know exactly what Southern Hills is, but if you don’t, it is where the PGA Championship last year (meaning=REALLY NICE). We all were willing to play a quick 18, but Coach Boland nixed that. Of course we then went to eat at Quiznos. After the season I am going to take a Quiznos break. When we got back to the hotel everyone headed either to take a
nap or get a massage. I decided to do both, and they were both really good. If you haven’t figured it out yet, this team is spoiled and we know it. For dinner, Caroline (our manager) was nice enough to get us dinner from Macaroni Grill. When dinner was over we all came to my room and watched the Spurs against the Hornets. It is not quite over, but GO HORNETS!!!!. Sanam and I are heading to bed soon. It is a big day for UVa tomorrow. GO HOOS!
– Houston Barrick
Cavalier Superfan Alex Inglot (Dom’s Brother)
FRIDAY, MAY 16
Today was an exciting day for the team. We finally got to start off the NCAA Round of 16 against Michigan. The day began as normal as everyone woke up and met in the lobby. Some of us had a choice to either hit for 20 minutes or go for a jog with coach. Most chose the jog, except for Dom and Michael. For the rest of us, the jog seemed like forever since Coach Boland decided that it would be a good idea for us to run for about 15 minutes and then circle the hotel for about another 10. Treat thought he would be sneaky and try to get in the side door of the hotel when Coach Boland was not looking, but unfortunately for him it was locked. As the whole team returned to lobby, we all ate breakfast.
At 10 a.m. we left for the practice site to hit, which is about five minutes away from the main site. On the way to our match, the team wanted to listen to music on the bus, so we decided to blast it. I am sure that this will become a ritual now since our team is extremely superstitious. We got to the courts and it was time for our match to begin. The match went extremely well and everyone seemed to be on top of their game. At the beginning of the doubles point, a man walked down the stairs near the courts in a blue cape with an orange “V” on the back, orange tights, a blue speedo, and a headband going across his face with holes cut out for his eyes. He began to scream “Let’s go Virginia!” This man just happens to be Dom’s brother, and he definitely made it clear to everybody that he was in fact Dom’s brother by screaming “I am Dom’s brother!” I think that brought a lot of laughs to people on and off the court. Anyways, everyone played great in doubles and both singles. I think what really helped was Houston and Sanam playing some great doubles. They finished their match in about 30 minutes and it helped the other guys feed off of that momentum. In singles, Dom played a great match. He looked solid in every part of his game as he was hitting some really big shots and serves. We know what Dom is capable of and it is great to see him playing some really good tennis. Treat clinched the match for us today against Jason Jung. Treat served really well as he did not get broken the entire match.
This was a great start to Tulsa with everyone feeling good about the way they played. After the match, we headed off to lunch at our host’s house. Every team in the tournament here has a host family. The lunch that they had for us was unbelievable. After lunch we all headed back to the hotel to relax and some got massages. At 8 p.m. everyone met downstairs once again for dinner. Tomorrow we will have the day off from matches and get a good practice in at the main site. Everyone seems ready to go and pumped up for our match against Baylor on Sunday. Well it is getting late so I will leave it at that for now. Hope you enjoy the reading and Go HOOS!!!
– Lee Singer
SATURDAY, MAY 17
Today was going to be an easy day from the start. Coach decided to leave it in our hands as to how much tennis we wanted to play. Eventually we decided to go to the tournament courts at 8 a.m. and play on those courts for 1.5 hours. Everyone tried to practice things that would come in useful for their match against Baylor. After our hit everyone went to Panera for breakfast. It did not long for the lads to fill themselves. We made our way back to the hotel after which the day was left up to us. Basically four of us went ahead and played 4 hours of Monopoly. The afternoon was spent playing and napping and not much else and after a dinner and a few hours of poker everyone went to bed. Tomorrow will be a battle because Baylor is a very good team and they will prove a tough challenge. Lets see how it goes tomorrow. Go Hoos.
SUNDAY, MAY 18
Hi to all,
It was another exciting day for Virginia Tennis today. The atmosphere at the courts was great, and the team was able to pull off another win against a very tough Baylor team. Our pre- match schedule as you all probably figured out already did not change much. We are not big fans of changing things up when we at tournaments and things are going well. Winning the doubles point was huge, and singles was a little closer than we would have liked but we got the job done. Dom came up huge again for us when we really needed him clinching the match with a huge 7-5 win in the third set. I was up 3-2 in the third when the match was decided and was feeling pretty confident that I would get the job done if it came down to me. Sommie and Michael continued playing some great tennis, while Sanam and Treat had tough matches, but I’m sure they will rebound back and be on top of their games for the Georgia match, which we are all super excited about.
I think this was the most exciting atmosphere we have played in all year and that is thanks to all the great fans that have made the big journey down to T-town to come support us. It really makes a difference and everyone on the team really appreciates all the support. We even got some really loud UVa chants going towards the end – that was really fun. Word has it that we have even more fans coming out for the Georgia match tomorrow which we are all excited and ready for. It should be fun. Thanks to all our great fans for all their support, and a special thanks to all the former players like Doug Stewart, Rylan Rizza, Dillon Walker, Nick Meythaler, and Stephen Rozek for being here and supporting us, and all the fans that made the long trip from C-ville to be here with us in Tulsa.
I’m off to bed as it is getting late and tomorrow should be another exciting day for Virginia Tennis.
Thanks for reading