Rebels Nearly Stun Bulldogs Again
March 12, 2008
LAS VEGAS - One year after upsetting a ranked Mississippi State squad, the UNLV men's tennis team nearly pulled an even bigger shocker before being edged 4-3 by the 39th-ranked Bulldogs at the Fertitta Tennis Complex on Wednesday.
The Rebels fell to 5-5 on the year.
MSU began the afternoon by winning two of three doubles matches for a 1-0 lead. UNLV's David Campbell and Luca Barlocchi won at the second spot 9-8 but the Bulldogs' top duo won 9-8 at the No. 1 position to clinch it.
In singles, Elliot Wronski, ranked 93rd, upset No. 26 Ivan Bjelica to improve to 12-6 this season. The Rebel junior, who lost 6-0, 6-3 in last year's meeting with Bjelica, picked up his third ranked win in the last month.
UNLV then got a victory from Wesley Burrows at No. 3 over Chris Doer, 3-6, 6-2, 6-0 and Campbell at No. 5 over Artem Kuznetsov, 6-4, 6-3. The overall match eventually came down to court six to decide the four-and-one-half hour marathon.
Freshman walk-on Rony Yeghnazary dropped the first set to Antonio Lastre before rallying to force a third. Lastre finally closed it out 7-5, 3-6, 6-3 to give MSU the victory.
"I was very pleased with our effort in doubles today but unfortunately ended up losing the point against a very good SEC team," UNLV head coach Owen Hambrook said. "Everyone fought hard in singles and even though we lost, we gained valuable experience to help us down the road."
UNLV will have another crack at an SEC opponent when it hosts No. 68 South Carolina on Thursday with doubles play beginning at 12:30 p.m. Admission is free of charge.
UNLV MEN'S TENNIS RESULTS #39 MISSISSIPPI STATE 4, UNLV 3 At Fertitta Tennis Complex, Las Vegas