Watling Falls To Hernandez In NCAA Singles Championship
May 23, 2012
ATHENS, Ga. - Senior Ashley Watling ended his singles career with a loss to North Carolina's Jose Hernandez in the opening round of the 2012 NCAA Singles Championship Wednesday morning at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex.
Watling, the No. 77-ranked player in the nation and the Conference USA Player of the Year, fell 6-3, 7-6 (12-10) to the No. 26-ranked Hernandez.
Hernandez carried a lone service break to the first set win. Watling broke Hernandez early in the second, but the Tar Heel earned two breaks to take a commanding lead.
Watling fought back and forced a tiebreak, and he jumped out to a 6-3 lead in the breaker. Hernandez was able to come from behind to capture the match with a 12-10 result in the tiebreak.
Watling ends his singles career with an 86-37 record. His win total ties him for sixth all-time in school history.
A representative from Tulsa has competed in the singles championship in each of the last seven years.
Watling will now team with junior Clifford Marsland in the NCAA Doubles Championship. The No. 11-ranked team in the nation will face the No. 2 pair of Steve Johnson and Roberto Quiroz May 24.
The top tandem from USC owns an 18-0 record, and they won their fourth-straight team championship May 22.
Johnson is also the nation's top ranked singles player, and he will begin play in the singles championship later today as he looks to defend his national championship.
Watling and Marsland are 29-8 overall and 19-6 this spring. They are 10-6 against ranked opponents, and they reached the finals of the 2011 ITA National Indoor Doubles Championship. They also advanced to the Round of 16 of the NCAA Doubles Championship last year.
The winner of the match will face either No. 26 John Collins/Maros Horny of Maryland or No. 28 Jarryd Botha/Ricky Doverspike of Alabama.
2012 NCAA Division I Men's Tennis Singles Championship May 23, 2012 at Athens, Ga. (Dan Magill Tennis Complex)
ATHLETICS TICKET OFFICE