Bulls Complete Fall Slate at ITA Regional Tournament
The University at Buffalo men's tennis team sent three individuals to the ITA Northeast Regional Championships and each player scored at least one victory in the prestigious tournament. Damien David, Vusa Hove and Ivan Vereshchaga were each entered in the singles competition with all three players finishing with 1-1 records. David and Vereshchaga also teammed to form UB's doubles entry as they reached the third round and finished the weekend with a 2-1 mark.
David, Hove Earn Seedings
Two of UB's singles entries earned seeds in the tournament field. Vusa Hove and Damien David both received first-round byes. Both players scored second round wins but were bounced out in the third round. Hove defeated Penn's Blaine Willenborg, 6-3, 7-6 in the second round of play but was defeated 6-2, 6-4 by Columbia's Winston Lin, the second seed in the tournament, in Saturday's third round. David needed three sets to defeat Lehigh's Ben Gilman, 6-1, 3-6, 6-3, in second-round play. David was eliminated from the third round when he was forced to retire in the final set of his match against Fordham's Srikar Alla. David won the first set, 7-6, but lost the second set in another tiebreaker and trailed 3-0 when play was stopped. Ivan Vereshchaga was eliminated in the second round by Sam Fife of Brown, another seeded entrant, 6-4, 6-3. Vereshchaga scored a 6-1, 6-2 victory over Niagara's Michael Elortegui in the opening round of singles play on Friday.
Doubles Duo Reaches Third Round
The doubles entry of Ivan Vereshchaga and Damien David reached the third round of play as they finished 2-1 in the tournament and completed the fall with a 7-3 record as a pair. Vereshchaga and David opened play on Friday by dispatching the Boston College tandem of Michael McGinnis and Jonathan Raude, 8-4 in the first round. On Saturday, they defeated Binghamton's Bastian Bornkessel and Ismail Dinia, 8-1. The UB pair was eliminated in Sunday's third round as they fell to the tournament's top seed, Matija Pecotic and Zach McCourt of Princeton, 8-4, to conclude their run through the tournament.
A Nickell's Worth
Following the weekend of play at the ITA meet, head coach Lee Nickell summed up the fall tournament season. "This has been an historic fall for us," said Nickell. "We are continuing to raise our level and we know that we are close to being a top 75 program. We are looking forward to the spring and carrying this momentum into the dual meet season." UB's dual meet season begins January 26 at Colgate and follows with a January 27 meeting in Hamilton against Bryant.