Immediate Release: May 4, 2005
VESTAL, N.Y. - On the heels of its third straight America East title, Binghamton men's tennis (21-5) will return to the NCAA Division I Championship - this time squaring off against No. 11 LSU in a regional match next Friday morning at 10 a.m. in Baton Rouge, La. The other first-round matchup will pit 20th-ranked and Conference USA champion Tulane (21-5) against No. 42, at-large selection Louisiana-Lafayette (12-7).
Binghamton earned the automatic berth alloted to the America East with its 4-3 victory over Stony Brook on Sunday, and will be returning to the NCAA Championship for the third straight year.
"Of course we're thrilled to be in the tournament," head coach Michael Starke said. "LSU has a first-class facility and obviously a very talented program. I'd like to think that with our third straight trip, maybe we received a small amount of respect by getting the No. 11 seed and not one of the top seeds."
The Tigers (19-8), ranked No. 10 in the latest Intercollegiate Tennis Association poll, are one of eight Southeastern Conference (SEC) teams in the draw. The 16 highest-ranked teams in the country received bids to host the first two rounds of the NCAA Championship.
LSU was ranked in the top-10 earlier in the season and has returned there after winning six of their last seven matches. The program reached the NCAA semifinals in 1998 and 1999.
The Tigers' top doubles tandem of Ken Skupski and Mark Growcott are ranked No.6 ranking in the country, and each is among the top-100 in singles. Skupski is ranked 36th and Growcott is 79th.
Binghamton's top player, sophomore Dan Hanegby (Herzliya, Israel), is ranked No. 107 in singles.
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