Immediate Release: May 3, 2011
men's tennis headed to UCLA for NCAA Regional
VESTAL, N.Y. -- The reward for another America East championship is a trip across the country to sunny California for Binghamton men's tennis.
Fresh from BU's fourth straight conference crown, the team learned Tuesday afternoon it had drawn 12th-seeded UCLA (16-6) in the NCAA Championship. The Bearcats (12-13), making their seventh trip to the NCAAs in the last nine years, will face the Bruins at 4 p.m. (ET) on Friday, May 13 at the Los Angeles Tennis Center.
The other first-round match that day features SEC power Ole Miss (12-9) taking on Big West champion UC Irvine (19-7) at 10:00 a.m. The two winners meet in the second round on May 14.
UCLA, ranked 11th in the latest ITA poll, boasts 16 NCAA team titles and has produced professional players such as Jimmy Connors, Arthur Ashe and more recently, Justin Gimelstob.
"Our guys are excited about the opportunity, both to go to California and also to play a team of that caliber and storied history," head coach Adam Cohen said. "Obviously UCLA is a very good team and we are looking forward to the challenge. We will bring our best effort and not be overwhelmed by the stadium or crowd. We plan on continuing to practice hard for the next 7-8 days before we leave."
The Bearcats captured the 2011 America East title with a 4-1 win over UMBC Sunday afternoon at Yale. It was the team's fourth straight crown and seventh in the last nine years.
Senior Sven Vloedgraven, ranked No. 77 in the country, leads the Bearcats from the top position. Already assured of an NCAA singles berth, Vloedgraven has won 21 consecutive matches and is 32-7 overall. Classmate and No. 2 Arnav Jain is 21-3 in dual matches. Both players are the only Binghamton tennis players to eclipse the 100-win plateau in their standout careers.
Last year during the team's record-breaking 25-2 season, BU made history by capturing a point in the team's 4-1 NCAA first round loss to No. 24 Georgia Tech. Jain provided the win with a straight-set triumph at fifth singles. It was the first time that an America East program scored a point at the NCAA Championship.
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