No. 20 Oklahoma State Holds Off No. 44 Denver, 4-3
May 10, 2008
Tulsa, Okla. - The 20th-ranked Oklahoma State University Cowboys hold off the 44th-ranked University of Denver Pioneers, 4-3, in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. OSU moves on to the second round, tomorrow at 1 p.m. and will face the winner of Binghamton and Tulsa.
The Cowboys took the doubles point by taking the No. 1 and No. 2 matches. At the No. 1 position, OSU's 18th-ranked pair of Nathan Byrnes and Oleksandr Nedovyesov upset Denver's 12th-ranked team of Adam Holmstrom and Niklas Persson, 8-5. OSU's duo of Dmytro Petrov and Ivan Puchkarov downed the Pioneers' squad of Andrew Landwerelen and David Simson, 8-3. The match at the No. 3 position went unfinished with Pioneers' team of Benny Althaus and Kalle Rosen holding a 6-5 lead over Anton Bobytskyi and Igor Sobolta.
The Cowboys took a 2-0 lead after Bobytskyi defeated Landwerelen, 6-3, 6-1 at the No. 5 position. Denver got on the board with Rosen downing Sobolta at No. 6, 6-3, 6-3. OSU went up 3-1 with No. 8 Nedovyesov slipping past No. 36 Holmstrom at No. 1 after two tiebreakers, 7-6 (7-2), 7-6 (7-3).
The Pioneers rallied with wins at positions No. 2 and No. 3. Persson upset No. 71 Puchkarov, 6-3, 2-6, 6-3, at No. 2, while later Simson dispatched Petrov, 6-3, 7-6 (7-5) at No. 3.
Clinching the match for the Cowboys, was Byrnes, who fought back after losing the first-set, beating Althaus, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3, at No. 4.
Head coach of the OSU, James Wadley was pleased with his team's effort, saying "It was a really good college tennis match, the matches were close, everybody played hard and everybody played good, there was a lot of enthusiasm with the crowd and both teams. I was fortunate, glad we won the doubles, because the doubles made the difference in the match, because the singles seem pretty even. I was happy that Nathan (Byrnes) was able to come through after dropping the first set and come back, winning the next two."
Denver's Head coach was also pleased with the valiant effort of his team. "I think for a team that has never been here and never been put in these kinds of positions, I think we respond unbelievably. Losing the doubles point, I think we were a little nervous and we came out fighting and I couldn't be more proud of this team."
The Cowboys will play the winner of Binghamton and Tulsa, tomorrow at 1 p.m. for the opportunity to play in the round of 16.
#20 Oklahoma State University 4, #44 University of Denver 3
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