Blue Raiders advance to HEB Classic finals

Garner wins over DePaul, UTSA on Day 1

March 1, 2013 · @MTAthletics

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas - No. 34 Middle Tennessee notched two victories on Day 1 of the HEB Classic to advance to tomorrow's finals against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi.

MT (10-4) defeated DePaul in the first round, 4-1, and UTSA in the semifinals, 4-2.  MT is now 2-0 against UTSA this season.

"The guys did a good job of competing today," head coach Jimmy Borendame said.  "We're looking forward to tomorrow's final.  It's going to be a tough day, and it's going to be windy, so hopefully we can overcome adversity and get a win."

Against DePaul, the Blue Raiders lost the doubles point for the first time in six matches, but rallied in the singles portion to take the win.

Victor Cornea, Christoph Lang, Ettore Zito and David Fox all won their singles matches to clinch the MT victory.

Fox and Lang won their doubles match-up with Filip Dzanko and Sten Leusink, 9-8 (7-5), but MT fell in No. 1 and 2 doubles to lose the point.

Cornea defeated DePaul's Mathias Hambach, 3-6, 6-2, 6-2, while Christoph Lang topped Leusink, 6-4, 6-4.  In Flight 5 singles, Zito won, 6-1, 6-1 over Jan-Willem Feilzer.  Fox closed out the match with a 6-4, 6-4 victory against Adam Reinhart.

Ben Davis and Yannick Born faced Dzanko and Paul John in singles, respectively, but their matches were unfinished because the Blue Raiders had already clinched their fourth team point.

In the semi-finals, MT and UTSA played the singles portion of the match first, and though UTSA grabbed wins in Flights 2 and 4, the Blue Raiders ultimately clinched the title berth.

Davis, ranked No. 98, defeated UTSA's Martin Ayala for the second time this season, 6-4, 4-6, 6-2.

After Cornea fell to Diogo Casa, 6-1, 2-6, 2-6, Lang put together a clutch performance in Flight 3 singles, helping MT take a 2-1 lead by defeating Tyler Brown, 7-6 (11-9), 6-0.

"I'm really proud of how Christoph played today," Borendame said.  "He wasn't feeling well, but came out and won two straight for us today, which was clutch."

Born lost his Flight 4 singles bout with Joel Rubio, 6-7 (3-7), 7-6 (7-2), 4-6, allowing UTSA to tie the match at 2-2.

The final two matches, however, belonged to the Blue Raiders, as Zito and Fox picked up their second singles wins of the day.  Zito defeated David Kelleher, 6-4, 6-1, and Fox was victorious against Eric Buchalter, 6-2, 6-0.

Middle Tennessee will face TAMU-CC in tomorrow's final, scheduled to begin at Noon CT.  Live stats are available through goislanders.com.

#34 Middle Tennessee 4, DePaul 1

Mar 01, 2013 at Corpus Christi, Texas

Singles competition
1. Filip Dzanko (DEPAUL) vs. #92 Davis, Ben (MT) no result
2. Cornea, Victor (MT) def. Mathias Hambach (DEPAUL) 3-6, 6-2, 6-3
3. Lang, Christoph (MT) def. Sten Leusink (DEPAUL) 6-4, 6-4
4. Paul John (DEPAUL) vs. Born, Yannick (MT) no result
5. Zito, Ettore (MT) def. Jan-Willem Feilzer (DEPAUL) 6-1, 6-1
6. Fox, David (MT) def. Adam Reinhart (DEPAUL) 6-4, 6-4

Doubles competition
1. Mathias Hambach/Jan-Willem Feilzer (DEPAUL) def. #35 Cornea, Victor/Davis, Ben (MT) 8-3
2. Born, Yannick/Brand, Marlon (MT) def. Paul John/Adam Reinhart (DEPAUL) 8-3
3. Filip Dzanko/Sten Leusink (DEPAUL) def. Lang, Christoph/Fox, David (MT) 9-8 (7-5)

Match Notes
DePaul 3-6
Middle Tennessee 9-4; National ranking #34
Order of finish: Doubles (1,2,3); Singles (2,3,5,6)

Middle Tennessee 4, UTSA 2

Mar 01, 2013 at Corpus Christi, Texas

Singles competition
1. #92 Davis, Ben (MT) def. Martin Ayala (UTSA) 6-4, 4-6, 6-2
2. Diogo Casa (UTSA) def. Cornea, Victor (MT) 1-6, 6-2, 6-2
3. Lang, Christoph (MT) def. Tyler Brown (UTSA) 7-6 (11-9), 6-0
4. Joel Rubio (UTSA) def. Born, Yannick (MT) 7-6 (7-3), 6-7 (2-7), 6-4
5. Zito, Ettore (MT) def. David Kelleher (UTSA) 6-4, 6-1
6. Fox, David (MT) def. Eric Buchalter (UTSA) 6-2, 6-0

Doubles competition
1. Martin Ayala/Diogo Casa (UTSA) vs. Cornea, Victor/Davis, Ben (MT) no result
2. Tyler Brown/Joel Rubio (UTSA) vs. Born, Yannick/Brand, Marlon (MT) no result
3. Eric Buchalter/Kolby Kilgo (UTSA) vs. Lang, Christoph/Fox, David (MT) no result

Match Notes
Middle Tennessee 10-4
Order of finish: Doubles (); Singles (1,2,3,4,5,6)

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