April 14, 2012
NEW ORLEANS - A milestone was reached Saturday afternoon at the Goldring Tennis Center as the Tulane men's tennis team defeated No. 67 Louisiana-Lafayette, 5-2, for the first victory over a ranked team since the return of the program.
The Green Wave (12-9) put the match away early in singles by taking the first three points with straight sets wins on courts one, four and six. Idan Mark earned a 6-3, 6-2, victory over Rick DeGroot on court one, Adam Bernstein took care of Damian Farinola, 6-1, 6-4, on court four and Takuma Ohashi secured the victory with a 6-3, 6-3, win over Jarred Wynan on court six.
"Hats off to the guys," Tulane head coach Mark Booras said. "We really competed well from start to finish. ULL is having a great year and have been ranked for the majority of the year. It was a tough in-state battle that brought some heat. I'm really pleased with the way we fought and how we got the doubles point and were able to get a quick jump in singles."
Tulane began the match by claiming the doubles point for the sixth straight match and for the 14th time this spring with wins on courts two and three. The duo of Rodrigo Rappaccioli and Shaye Wali earned their 14th win overall and the 10th of the spring with an 8-2 victory over ULL's Farinola and Wynan on court three, while Bernstein and Ohashi defeated Carl Alberton and Yanick Mandl, 8-6, on court two.
The pair of Mark and Joe Young where not able to continue their winning streak, falling 9-8, on court one to DeGroot and Carlin Murray, to snap the streak at 10 straight wins.
Rappaccioli earned the other point for the Green Wave with a 6-3, 7-6, win over Ted Nilsson on court five.
The Green Wave will host No. 26 Tulsa in the regular season finale on Sunday at Noon.
"Sunday will be our toughest match of the year with Tulsa being ranked in the top 30," Booras added. "I can't think of a better time for us to play them, coming off a couple great wins in a row here. This is a good opportunity for us to get a big win for the program."
Tulane's lone senior, Shaye Wali, will be honored in a brief ceremony prior to the Conference USA match.
"Shaye has done some tremendous things for us in the three years he has been here," Booras added. "He took a chance of coming here to build and rebuild something and that shows a lot about his character. We are so thankful for everything he has given to the program."