Connor Smith finished his first season as a Buckeye 30-7 overall after winning 6-2, 6-2 vs. UCLA. (Photo credit to C. B. SCHMELTER/Captured In Action)
May 20, 2012
COLUMBUS, Ohio - The No. 5 seed Ohio State men's tennis team lost to No. 4 UCLA 4-2 Sunday in the quarterfinals of the 2012 NCAA Division I Men's Tennis Championship in Athens, Ga. The Buckeyes conclude the season with a 34-4 overall record after advancing to their seventh consecutive NCAA quarterfinal.
In a long doubles session, Ohio State claimed the first match on court three after Peter Kobelt and Connor Smithdefeated Marcos Giron and Warren Hardie 8-4. After being tied 4-4, the Buckeye pair broke the Bruin duo twice to win the remaining four points. Kobelt and Smith conclude the 2011-12 campaign 27-5 overall.
Nick Meister and Dennis Novikov beat the 32nd-ranked Buckeye tandem of Devin McCarthy and Ille Van Engelenon court two 8-1 to leave the doubles point up to court one. With 33 wins (10 losses), McCarthy and Van Engelen finish the season with the team lead in doubles wins.
Alex Brigham and Adrien Puget, ranked 44th, downed the nation's top-ranked pair in Chase Buchanan and Blaz Rola8-6 after breaking the Buckeye duo to take a 7-5 lead. Buchanan and Rola fall to 30-4 on the season and 14-2 vs. ranked opponents. It was only the fourth time all season the Scarlet and Gray didn't claim the doubles point.
Smith evened the match at 1-1 after a 6-2, 6-2 victory vs. Dennis Mkrtchain. The Tampa, Fla., native finishes the season 30-7 overall, including an 18-5 mark at the sixth position.
The Buckeyes took a temporary lead after Buchanan easily won 6-3, 6-3 on court one over No. 62 Clay Thompson. The Ohio State senior, ranked No. 10 nationally, is now 29-6 overall, including a 13-4 mark vs. ranked players.
Novikov evened the match for UCLA following a 6-4, 6-0 victory over Kobelt. The Bruins regained the lead 3-2 when Giron, ranked No. 84, defeated McCarthy 6-4, 6-4 at No. 4.
UCLA `s Puget, ranked 46th in the nation, defeated Hunter Callahan6-3, 7-6 (7-0) on court five to seal the Bruins' win.
Up next, Buchanan and Rola will compete in the NCAA Singles and Doubles championships, which will begin Wednesday May 23. At-large selections for the singles tournament, Buchanan and Rola also will pair up for the doubles championship.
• Ohio State is 32-13 all-time in the NCAA tournament.
• As the fifth-ranked team nationally, Ohio State has a 12-2 record.
• The Buckeyes won 34 of 38 doubles points this season.
• Since 2001, Ohio State is 279-40 (.877) when ranked in the ITA Top 25. That percentage improves to 232-17 (.935) since 2005-06.
• The Buckeyes have been ranked in the ITA Top 10 for 200 consecutive matches (beginning March 7, 2006).
• The Scarlet and Gray finish the season 12-4 vs. teams ranked in the ITA Top 25 and 23-4 vs. teams in the Top 75.
• Blaz Rola leads the team with 33 singles wins, while Chase Buchananleads the squad with 39 doubles wins.
Tennis Match Results
#4 UCLA 4, #5 Ohio State 2
May 20, 2012 at Athens, Ga.
(Dan Magill Tennis Complex)
1. #10 Chase Buchanan (OSU) def. #62 Clay Thompson (UCLA) 6-3, 6-3
2. #16 Nick Meister (UCLA) vs. #9 Blaz Rola (OSU) 3-6, 6-3, 3-2, unfinished
3. Dennis Novikov (UCLA) def. #67 Peter Kobelt (OSU) 6-4, 6-0
4. #84 Marcos Giron (UCLA) def. #85 Devin McCarthy (OSU) 6-4, 6-4
5. #46 Adrien Puget (UCLA) def. #107 Hunter Callahan (OSU) 6-3, 7-6 (7-0)
6. Connor Smith(OSU) def. Dennis Mkrtchian (UCLA) 6-2, 6-2
1. #44 Alex Brigham/Adrien Puget (UCLA) def. #1 Chase Buchanan/Blaz Rola (OSU) 8-6
2. #85 Nick Meister/Dennis Novikov (UCLA) def. #32 Devin McCarthy/Ille Van Engelen (OSU) 8-1
3. Peter Kobelt/Connor Smith (OSU) def. Marcos Giron/Warren Hardie (UCLA) 8-4
Ohio State 34-4; National ranking #5
UCLA 26-3; National ranking #4
Order of finish: Doubles (3,2,1); Singles (6,1,3,4,5)
Ohio State Sweeps No. 6 Illinois