March 28, 2007
EAST LANSING, Mich. - The Michigan State men's tennis team was blanked by fifth-ranked Notre Dame, 7-0, on Wednesday afternoon at the MSU Indoor Tennis Center, but the Spartans' top doubles team of Adam Monich and Nick Rinks provided the bright spot in the loss. The 32nd-ranked duo won over the seventh-ranked doubles team in the nation, collecting their second win over a top-10 doubles twosome in the dual season.
"The win at No. 1 doubles was a big one for (Adam) Monich and (Nick) Rinks," head coach Gene Orlando said. "Those guys continue to play well together and win matches. That was a huge positive in today's match."
On the third court, the pair of Jason Norville and Tyler Sauerbrey won the first game, but dropped the next eight to lose to the Fighting Irish duo of Stephen Bass and Andrew Roth, 8-1. Norville and Sauerbrey evened their record together to 1-1 during dual season play.
With the Spartans down a match, the doubles point was battled out on courts Nos. 1 and 2. On the second court, Alex Forger and Michael Flowers tied the score at 3-all, but ended up losing, 8-4, to Brett Helgeson and Barry King, winning the doubles point for Notre Dame.
On court No. 1, the 32nd-ranked team of Monich and Rinks defeated their second top-10 doubles team of the dual season, having previously defeated Michigan's second-ranked team. The Spartan team tied the score at 4-all against the No. 7 team of Ryan Keckley and Sheeva Parhby. Monich and Rinks continued to fight and took the advantage, 7-5, and eventually defeated the pair, 8-6.
Notre Dame had the 1-0 advantage with the doubles point and won every singles match for the 7-0 Notre Dame victory.
The first match off the court was No. 4 Norville who fell in two sets to Barry King, 6-0, 6-0.
On the fifth court, Scott Rasmussen dropped two sets to Keckley, 6-3, 6-4. Forger lost to No. 54 Parbhu, 6-1, 6-4, on court No. 2.
Clinching the match for Notre Dame was the sixth court. Notre Dame's Roth won in straight sets over Tyler Sauerbrey, 6-3, 6-2.
Next off the court was Monich and 102nd-ranked Helgeson on court No. 3. Monich fell behind early in the first set and lost, 6-3. He came back with a win in the second, 6-1, forcing a third and final set. As with the first set, Monich dropped behind early, 1-3, and was not able to recover as Helgeson cruised to a 6-1 victory.
The final match to finish was on court No. 1 as No. 45 Rinks battled with No. 8 Bass. Rinks lost the first set, 6-3, and then came back in the second to tie at every possible point. Tied at 6-all, Rinks and Bass stayed close in the tiebreaker, but Rinks eventually lost, 9-7. This was Rinks' first loss in six matches.
"We put up a fight in singles," Orlando said. "Monich came back for a third set and Rinks held his own against the eighth-ranked player in the country."
Michigan State drops to 9-11 and Notre Dame improves to 17-2.
Michigan State returns to action on Saturday as it takes on No. 71 Indiana in Bloomington, Ind., at noon. On Sunday, April 1, the team will visit No. 3 Ohio State for another noon match.