2005 NCAA MEN'S TENNIS CHAMPIONSHIPS
Texas A&M University - College Station, Texas
May 21-30, 2005
May 26, 2005-Day Two of Singles Championships
I didn't get to see too many matches today, but the ones I did catch were exciting. Florida's Greg Ouellette continued his winning ways, this time eliminating Stephane Rod of Virginia Tech in two tight sets -- 7-6(4),7-5. Illinois' Ryler DeHeart (the seventh seed) was once again taken three sets and once again pulled it out -- 5-7,7-6(5),6-3 -- over Virginia Commonwealth's Arnaud Lecloerec.
For the second day in a row I was impressed by Luke Shields. Always a great player, the Boise State freshman has really come alive this tournmament. Today he eliminated the fifth-seeded Ludovic Walter of Duke in straight sets. Luke is looking clean and confident out there and I think we'll be seeing a lot more of him in the days to come.
Kentucky's Jesse Witten seems to have escaped fears that came with his first round losses the last two years (after having made the finals as a freshman) and today easily dismissed Adil Shamasdin of Brown, 6-2,6-2. I'd like to see the recent graduate in the winner's circle again as a prelude to his entry onto the professional circuit.
Next year's NCAA Division I Championships will be an even more exciting event as the men's and women's championships will both be held at Stanford. It promises to be a festival that may rival the majors on the beautiful Palo Alto campus. It's already penciled in on my calendar. There will only be one winner at the 2005 NCAA Division I Men's Championships, but there are 63 other men gaining the experience of a lifetime that many will bring on to Stanford next year.Until Next Year,
P.S. Over at the women's event, where most of the top seeds were already gone and Amber Liu was forced to give up her bid for a record third trophy because of a shoulder injury, UCLA freshman Riza Zalameda today upset the No. 2, Julie Coin.(Above Ryler DeHeart is watched and advised by Illinois' Associate Head Coach Brad Dancer.
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