FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Razorbacks Matt Hogan and Dmitry Lebedev breezed through the first two rounds of the Wilson/ITA Central Region Championships on Friday, only to find themselves with an appointment to face each other in Saturday’s round of 16.“If the guys were aware of the match with each other tomorrow, they didn’t tell me,” said Razorbacks head coach Robert Cox. “I had no idea they would run into each other this early in the tournament.”
Hogan, the No.125-ranked singles player, beat first round opponent Ivan Mendoza of Drake, 6-2, 6-2, before taking down George Chanturia of Oklahoma, 6-4, 6-1. Fellow Hog Lebedev breezed through his first two rounds, beating Illinois State’s Xavier Riart-Ferrer, 6-1, 6-0 and Matt Teivans of Wichita State, 6-3, 6-0.
“Both Hogan and Lebedev played well today and they should give us a good match tomorrow against each other,” said Cox.
After dropping his first round match, 6-3, 6-7(5), 6-2, to Nebraska’s Benedikt Lindheim, 12-seed Chris Nott won his round of 32 consolation singles match over Rodrigo Briceno of Wichita State, 6-1, 6-0. Senior Connor Smith also lost in the round of 64 of the main draw, losing to Adrian Chermaci of Wichita State, 6-2, 6-1, but rebounded in his first consolation match, beating Daniel Tobar of Illinois State. The third and final Arkansas player left in the consolation singles draw is Nick Spinazze who lost a tough first round match in the main draw, 6-2, 4-6, 6-2, to Ricardo Lau of Drake. In his afternoon consolation match, Spinazze was able to brush aside University of Missouri-Kansas City’s Erwin Quintanilla in straight sets, winning 6-4, 6-3.
“I’m happy with the way several of our players, like Nott who had a hard first round match, were able to pull out wins in the consolation draw and will hopefully continue to win their matches tomorrow,” Cox said.
Other Arkansas matches of the day included Taylor King, who won in the round of 64 to Michael Hobson of Illinois State by the score of 6-0, 6-3 before losing to Ionut Beleleu of Oklahoma 6-4, 6-1, in the second round, ending his weekend. Matt Walters also won his first round match in the main draw, pulling out a 7-5, 6-2, victory over Rusty Turpin of Tulsa and dropping his second round match against Oklahoma State’s Anton Bobytskyi, 7-6(5), 6-2. Hog Tyler Tarnasky had the Razorbacks’ easiest first round match, dominating Illinois State’s Michah LeMoine, 6-0, 6-0 before meeting his match in Marko Ballok of Tulsa and losing in three sets, 3-6, 6-3, 6-2.
“King and Walters played well today and Tyler’s loss in his second match was a good match for him in the tournament. I’m very proud of all three of them and their play today,” said Cox.
The only Arkansas player to lose both his matches on Friday was Bradwin Williams who went down in a first round battle, 1-6, 6-1, 7-6(3) to Jonathan Obrist of Wichita State and dropping his consolation match with Eric West of Southern Illinois, 6-4, 6-3.
In doubles, the Hogs took four of five in their round of 32 matches, including three-seed Blake Strode and Hogan who beat James Seagraves and partner Albert Jou of Tulsa 8-4. The other Razorback doubles teams to win on Friday were Nott and King, beating out Hugo Vidal and Sebastian Collins of Southern Illinois 8-5, Lebedev and Walters over Matt Gordon and Bryan Beasley from St. Louis, 8-3, and Williams and Tarnasky who won, 8-5, in their match with Mendoza and Lau of Drake. Spinazze and teammate Smith lost to Nebraska’s Stahmer and Van Impe, 8-4.
On Saturday, the Hogs will be on the courts at the Dills Indoor Stadium and George M. Billingsley Tennis Center at 8:30 a.m. again for consolation singles, followed by main draw singles at 11 a.m. and doubles in the afternoon. For complete men’s tennis coverage, log on to www.ArkansasRazorbacks.com.
Saturday’s Schedule of PlayConsolation Single: Nott vs. Maor Aumueller (Neb) Smith vs. Sebastian Rubiano (SIU) Spinazze vs. Michael Hobson (ILS) Main Draw Singles: Hogan vs. Lebedev Main Draw Doubles:Hogan/Strode vs. Ristivojevic-Guerin (UMKC) Nott/King vs. Rusty Turpin/Patrick Collins (Tulsa) Lebedev/Walters vs. Sergey Avdeyev/Blake Boswell (OU) Williams/Tarnasky vs. Maor Aumueller/Benedikt Lindheim (Neb)
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