ANN ARBOR, Mich. - After dropping the first set in five of its six singles tilts, the No. 19-ranked Tulsa men's tennis squad fought back to defeat No. 21 Michigan, 5-2.
The Golden Hurricane improved to 6-5 on the year with its third triumph over a Big 10 squad, while the Wolverines fell to 4-4.
"We are 6-5 halfway through the season," commented Head Coach Vince Westbrook. "I put our tennis team through one of the toughest schedules in all of college tennis, and they responded well. I think we let a few matches slip through the cracks, but overall I think we did a really good job."
"I think Michigan is a very good team, they played very well tonight and my hat goes off to Michigan Coach Bruce Berque," Westbrook said. "We were tough and stayed on them. This was a better showing than we had at Texas A&M last week."
Tulsa rallied to take home the doubles point to assume a 1-0 lead, as junior Clifford Marsland and sophomore Alejandro Espejo dropped an 8-3 affair to No. 30 Evan King and Alex Buzzi at No. 1 doubles. TU stormed back as the senior duo of Grant Ive and Tristan Jackson, playing No. 2 doubles, defeated Barrett Franks and Shaun Bernstein, 8-4. TU clinched the point with an 8-5 triumph by junior Japie De Klerk and freshman Carlos Bautista at No. 3 doubles.
Michigan responded taking the first two singles matches, but Tulsa won the final four singles bouts to win the match.
At No. 1 singles, No. 84 Marsland fell to No. 17 King, 6-4, 6-2, and Jackson lost at No. 5 singles to UM's Franks, 7-5, 6-4 to give the Wolverines a 2-1 lead
De Klerk, ranked No. 52, evened the match at two with a 7-5, 6-2 victory over No. 67 Vlad Stefan.
The final three TU triumphs were come from behind victories, which began with Bautista at No. 6 singles. After dropping the first set 7-5 to Justin Rossi, Bautista won the second set 6-0 and the final set 6-2 to give the Hurricane a 3-2 advantage.
Espejo clinched the match for TU with a 3-6, 6-2, 6-4 win over Alex Petrone at No. 3 singles.
Ive gave TU its fifth point of the match with a 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 win over Michael Zhu at the No. 4 flight.
The Golden Hurricane will conclude its road swing on Friday, March 8, with a 2 p.m. contest against Oklahoma State in Stillwater. TU returns home on Sunday, March 10, with a noon match against SMU.
"After this win, we now start to prepare for outdoor tennis," Westbrook said. "We hope to hit our stride as we prepare for the conference championship and the NCAA tournament."
For all Tulsa men's tennis news and information, visit www.TulsaHurricane.com. Follow Tulsa Athletics on Twitter at www.Twitter.com/TulsaHurricane and Facebook at www.facebook.com/TulsaHurricane. Follow Tulsa Men's Tennis on Twitter (http://twitter.com/TulsaMTennis) and Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/TulsaMTennis).
Tennis Match Results
Tulsa vs Michigan
Feb 27, 2013 at Ann Arbor, Mich.
#19 Tulsa 5, #21 Michigan 2
No. 1 -- No. 16 Evan King (U-M) d. No. 84 Clifford Marsland (Tulsa), 6-4, 6-2
No. 2 -- No. 52 Japie De Klerk (Tulsa) d. No. 67 Vlad Stefan (U-M), 7-5, 6-2
No. 3 -- Alejandro Espejo (Tulsa) d. Alex Petrone (U-M), 3-6, 6-2, 6-4
No. 4 -- Grant Ive (Tulsa) d. Michael Zhu (U-M), 4-6, 6-3, 6-4
No. 5 -- Barrett Franks (U-M) d. Tristan Jackson (Tulsa), 7-5, 6-4
No. 6 -- Carlos Bautista (Tulsa) d. Justin Rossi (U-M), 5-7, 6-0, 6-2
No. 1 -- No. 30 Evan King/Alex Buzzi (U-M) d. Clifford Marsland/Alejandro Espejo (Tulsa), 8-3
No. 2 -- Grant Ive/Tristan Jackson (Tulsa) d. Barrett Franks/Shaun Bernstein (U-M), 8-4
No. 3 -- Japie De Klerk/Carlos Bautista (Tulsa) d. Alex Petrone/Michael Zhu (U-M), 8-5
Match Notes: Michigan (4-4), Tulsa (6-5)
Order of finish: Doubles - 1-2-3 ; Singles - 5-1-2-6-3-4