April 16, 2011
Senior Oscar Podlewski opened his final weekend of home competition by battling back from an early 5-1 deficit to deliver the clinching point as the 42nd ranked Rice Owls downed 59th ranked SMU 5-2 on Saturday at Jake Hess Tennis Stadium.
Podlewski, who will be honored during Senior Day activities prior to Sunday's regular season finale against UT-Arlington, fell behind the Mustangs' Gaston Cuadranti in the first set before rallying to take the set in a tiebreaker, then closed the match out with a 6-2 win in the second set to grab the clinching fourth point for the Owls.
The win snapped a four-match losing streak for the Owls (14-8) who will look to defend their Conference USA team title next weekend in Tulsa. They opened the match strongly by taking all three doubles matches to grab the first point of the afternoon, but SMU rebounded at the start of singles winning the first set in three and taking a large lead in a fourth. Sam Garforth-Bles wasted little time in pushing the Owls lead to 2-0 with a straight set win at No. 4, and Peter Frank extended the lead to 3-0 after coming back from a 4-3 deficit at No. 2 in his first set.
SMU closed to 3-2 with wins at No. 5 and No. 1 before Podlewski slammed the door on the comeback and Michael Nuesslein capped the day with a comeback win of his own at No. 6. Nuesslein dropped the first set 6-1 and trailed 4-1 in the second before mounting a comeback to win 1-6, 6-4, 6-.
The Owls will wrap up the regular season with an 11 a.m. match against UT-Arlington on Sunday at Jake Hess Tennis Stadium.
Tennis Match Results
SMU vs Rice
4/16/2011 at Houston, TX
(Jake Hess Tennis Stadium)
#42 Rice 5, #59 SMU 2
1. #44 Artem Baradach (SMU) def. #96 Harry Fowler (RICE) 6-2, 4-6, 6-2
2. Peter Frank (RICE) def. David Costa (SMU) 6-4, 6-1
3. Oscar Podlewski (RICE) def. Gaston Cuadranti (SMU) 7-6 (7-2), 6-2
4. Sam Garforth-Bles (RICE) def. Adham El-Effendi (SMU) 6-4, 6-2
5. Mischa Nowicki (SMU) def. Christian Saravia (RICE) 6-4, 6-1
6. Michael Nuesslein (RICE) def. Tobias Flood (SMU) 1-6, 6-4, 6-1
1. Oscar Podlewski/Harry Fowler (RICE) def. Tobias Flood/Joseph Hattrup (SMU) 8-4
2. Christian Saravia/Michael Nuesslein (RICE) def. Adham El-Effendi/Darren Walsh (SMU) 9-8 (7-5)
3. #80 Peter Frank/Sam Garforth-Bles (RICE) def. #88 Artem Baradach/Gaston Cuadranti (SMU) 8-7 (7-3)
SMU 16-8; National ranking #59
Rice 14-8; National ranking #42
Order of finih: Doubles (1,2,3); Singles (4,5,2,1,3,6)