Comeback Falls Short Against No. 16 Auburn

Vikram Reddy

April 14, 2012

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TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - In its final home match of the season, the men's tennis team dropped a 4-1 decision to No. 16 Auburn on Saturday at the Alabama Tennis Stadium. With the loss, the Crimson Tide dips to 10-4 overall and finishes the season 2-9 in Southeastern Conference play, while the Tigers improve to 16-8 overall and 5-6 in the league.

"I'm pleased with our effort tonight, and we played well in several spots," said Alabama head coach Billy Pate. "Auburn is a very good team this year, and we just simply didn't convert when we had some chances. That will always hurt you against a good team."

Auburn took the doubles point, sweeping all three courts. First to finish was the matchup on court two where Dennis Lengsfeld and Lucas Lopasso posted an 8-3 win over Vikram Reddy and Carlos Taborga. The point was clinched shortly after on court three as Daniel Cochrane and Lukas Ollert topped David Vieyra and Filippos Tsangaridis, 8-1. The matchup on court one was a battle throughout, but in the end, the Tigers' 14th-ranked duo of Alex Stamchev and Andreas Mies would claim the 8-5 win over Alabama's 34th-ranked team of Jarryd Botha and Ricky Doverspike.

No. 119 Reddy put the Tide on the board, winning the first singles match of the night as he posted a 6-3, 6-2 victory against Lengsfeld on court four. The Tigers jumped back in front with a win on court six as Ollert would earn a 6-2, 6-2 win over Michael Thompson. Auburn would then take a 3-1 lead as 19th-ranked Mies collected a 6-3, 6-3 win over No. 121 Doverspike on court one.

From there, the match appeared as if it could go either way as Vieyra won his first set and Alabama split sets on the other two. Despite the tough fight from Botha on court two, however, it would be No. 90 Stamchev clinching the victory for Auburn, winning 6-2, 6-7(5), 6-3. The final two matches were called once the match was decided, with Proskura and Vieyra both splitting close sets.

"All three of our doubles positions were disappointing, and naturally, that put us in a hole," added Pate. "We also missed several opportunities early in singles to gain an advantage. I felt pretty good about the two matches on court we didn't finish, but we needed one more to turn our way to give ourselves a chance to get the fourth point. We'll rebound from this and get ready for our first round in the SEC Tournament"

Alabama enters postseason play next week as it heads to Starkville, Miss. for the SEC Tournament. The Tide enters the tournament as the No. 11 seed and will take on sixth-seeded Tennessee on Thursday at 11 a.m. CT.

1. No. 14 Stamchev/Mies (AU) def. No. 34 Doverspike/Botha (UA) 8-5
2. Lengsfeld/Lopasso (AU) def. Reddy/Taborga (UA) 8-3
3. Cochrane/Ollert (AU) def. Vieyra/Tsangaridis (UA) 8-1
Order of Finish: 2,3,1

1. No. 19 Andreas Mies (AU) def. No. 121 Ricky Doverspike (UA) 6-3, 6-3
2. No. 90 Alex Stamchev (AU) def. Jarryd Botha (UA) 6-2, 6-7(5), 6-3
3. No. 102 Daniil Proskura (UA) vs. Daniel Cochrane (AU) 5-7, 6-4, 1-0, unf.
4. No. 119 Vikram Reddy (UA) def. Dennis Lengsfeld (AU) 6-3, 6-2
5. David Vieyra (UA) vs. Lucas Lopasso (AU) 7-6(5), 6-7(3), 1-0, unf.
6. Lukas Ollert (AU) def. Michael Thompson (UA) 6-2, 6-2
Order of Finish: 4,6,1,2*