TULSA, Okla. – Senior Razorback Blake Strode defeated two ranked opponents on his way into the round of 16 at the ITA All-American Championships on Thursday, first taking down No.50 Lucas Jovita of South Florida, 6-3, 6-4, in an early morning match before besting Ohio State’s Bryan Koniecko, the country’s No.9-ranked player, in straight sets, 6-4, 6-3. Strode’s win over Koniecko is his first career win over a Top 10 player.“Blake played two very solid matches today against two of the best players in the nation,” said Razorbacks head coach Robert Cox. “It’s an accomplishment for him to reach the round of 16 and hopefully he can continue to play well as the tournament moves forward.”
Strode will try to go three-for-three against ranked foes when he faces No.6 Arnau Brugues of Tulsa on Friday at the Michael D. Case Tennis Center at the University of Tulsa. Strode dropped his only match against Brugues, losing 6-2, 6-2, in Arkansas’ dual match against Tulsa last season. For complete men’s tennis coverage, log on to www.ArkansasRazorbacks.com.