#2 Barry 5, #7 Florida Gulf Coast 3

May 7, 2005

MIAMI SHORES, Fla.- The top-seeded Barry University men's tennis will be joining the women at the NCAA Division II Tennis Championships after posting a 5-3 win over the fourth-seed, the Florida Gulf Coast Eagles, at the Buccaneer Tennis Center on Saturday.

The Bucs claimed two of three doubles matches. "Taking two doubles points was key for us today," Barry head coach Dr. George Samuel said. "When we played them over there, we lost two of three. So getting two today was very important."

In a matchup of two of the top teams in Division II at the number one flight, Barry's sixth-ranked team of Thomas Hipp and Patrick Rittenauer remained undefeated at 10-0 with an 8-6 win over FGCU's Jose Pastrello and Richard Stempnowski, the #7-ranked team. Alex Praderas and Victor Rodriguez got Barry's other double point by beating Alberto Gutierrez and Seth Fogelman 8-5 at number three.

At number two doubles, Barry's Sebastian Losavio and Martin Jensen had three match points, but could not convert at the Eagles' Juan Carlos Osorio and Tim Offerman forced a tiebreaker and won 9-8.

In singles, Thomas Hipp put the Bucs up 3-1 with a 6-1, 6-1 rout of Pastrello at number two. "Having played him before," Hipp said, "I knew he had a great serve. I just concentrated on being very consistent with my return and let my advantage on the baseline carry through to the win."

Victor Rodriguez made to 4-1 Barry by beating Gutierrez 6-4, 6-2 at number four. Rodriguez had sat out the singles in the Bucs' 5-4 win earlier in the season.

The Eagles would not go quietly however. Osorio handed Rittenauer a 6-1, 6-4 loss at number three, the first of the year for Rittenauer. The pair has now split two matches this season, with each being the other's only loss. Fogelman also avenged his earlier loss to Jensen, winning 6-4, 6-2 at number six.

Lauter closed out the match with a 6-4, 6-3 win at number five over Offerman, though Barry's Losavio was just two points away from closing out at number one, leading #5-ranked Stempnowski 7-6 (4), 5-2 and up 30-15 in his service game.

"The guys in the middle of the lineup really did a good job for us today," Samuel said. "Victor (Rodriguez) and Manuel (Lauter) both played great matches."

Now the Buccaneers will look ahead to the national championship tournament at San Lando Park in Orlando, Fla., May 11-14. Their opponent in the round of 16 will be the Indians of Midwestern State, who rallied back from a 4-0 deficit to knock off second-seeded Abilene Christian in the Central Region, to advance to Orlando.

"We have such better team chemistry this year than last year," Hipp opined. "We're really excited to have a chance to go back there and I think we'll go very well."

Samuel added, "I never really look at these things early, but from what I've seen, I like our chances with the draw."

Tennis Match Results
Florida Gulf Coast vs Barry
May 07, 2005 at Miami Shores, Fla.

Singles competition:
1. #11 Sebastian Losavio (BUM) vs. #5 Richard Stempnowski (FGCU) 7-6 (7-4), 5-2, unfinished
2. #17 Thomas Hipp (BUM) def. Jose Pastrello (FGCU) 6-1, 6-1
3. #42 Juan Carlos Osorio (FGCU) def. #41 Patrick Rittenauer (BUM) 6-1, 6-4
4. Victor Rodriguez (BUM) def. Alberto Gutierrez (FGCU) 6-4, 6-2
5. Manuel Lauter (BUM) def. Tim Offerman (FGCU) 6-4, 6-3
6. Seth Fogelman (FGCU) def. Martin Jensen (BUM) 6-4, 6-2

Doubles competition:
1. #6 Thomas Hipp/Patrick Rittenauer (BUM) def. #7 Jose Pastrello/Richard Stempnowski (FGCU) 8-6
2. Juan Carlos Osorio/Tim Offerman (FGCU) def. Sebastian Losavio/Martin Jensen (BUM) 9-8 (10-8)
3. Alex Praderas/Victor Rodriguez (BUM) def. Alberto Gutierrez/Seth Fogelman (FGCU) 8-5

Match Notes:
Florida Gulf Coast 19-4; National ranking #7; Regional ranking #4
Barry 19-1; National ranking #2; Regional ranking #1
Order of finish: Doubles (3,1,2); Singles (,2,4,3)
Official: Dave LeBoutillier

-- Courtesy Barry University