Michigan Falls in Non-Conference Finale at LSU

March 17, 2011

Notes & Quotes

Site: Baton Rouge, La. (W.T. "Dub" Robinson Stadium)
Score: LSU 5, #16 Michigan 2
Records: Michigan (7-5), LSU (6-8)
Next U-M Event: Sunday, March 20 -- at Michigan State (East Lansing, Mich.), Noon

BATON ROUGE, La. -- The No. 16-ranked University of Michigan men's tennis team began a four-match trip on a sour note, falling at LSU, 5-2, in the Wolverines' non-conference finale on Thursday (March 17) at W.T. "Dub" Robinson Stadium.

LSU grabbed control of the match early, winning on two of the three doubles courts to take a 1-0 lead in the contest. The highlight of doubles play was the back-and-forth contest between two of the nation's top doubles tandems, Michigan's Jason Jung (Torrance, Calif./West Torrance) and Evan King (Chicago, Ill./Kaplan), ranked No. 18, and Sebastian Carlsson and Neal Skupski of LSU, ranked No. 12. The Tigers' pair won, 8-6, and after a win at No. 2, clinched the point.

Freshman Shaun Bernstein (Plainview, N.Y./Plainview Old Bethpage JFK) and Justin Rossi (Novi, Mich./Laurel Springs Prep) then both fell, at Nos. 3 and 5, respectively, as LSU took a 3-0 lead.

The Wolverines got on the board after the red-hot play from King continued, as he took down another ranked opponent -- his seventh during his now nine-match win streak -- beating No. 92 Neal Skupski, 6-3, 6-3, to make the score 3-1.

However, LSU clinched the match with a victory at No. 4. Senior Chris Madden (Lotus, Calif./Ponderosa) was in good position to get his first singles victory of the year, leading 4-2 in the third set in his match at No. 6 but was overtaken in the final four games by Julien Gauthier, losing 6-4, 3-6, 6-4.

Despite the match being clinched, Jung came back to defeat Olivier Borsos, 2-6, 7-5, 6-4, making the final score, 5-2.

Michigan opens Big Ten Conference play on Sunday (March 20) at noon against Michigan State in East Lansing, Mich. The Wolverines have dominated the all-time series against their in-state rivals, owning a 91-19 record, including a six-match win streak dating back to 2004.

The following are match-by-match results:

No. 1 -- #20 Evan King (U-M) d. #92 Neal Skupski (LSU), 6-3, 6-3
No. 2 -- #60 Jason Jung (U-M) d. Olivier Borsos (LSU), 2-6, 7-5, 6-4
No. 3 -- Stefan Szacinski (LSU) d. Shaun Bernstein (U-M), 6-2, 6-1
No. 4 -- Sebastian Carlsson (LSU) d. Barrett Franks (U-M), 6-4, 7-6 (5)
No. 5 -- Mark Bowtell (LSU) d. Justin Rossi (U-M), 6-1, 6-2
No. 6 -- Julien Gauthier (LSU) d. Chris Madden (U-M), 6-4, 3-6, 6-4

No. 1 -- #12 Sebastian Carlsson/Neal Skupski (LSU) d. #18 Jason Jung/Evan King (U-M), 8-6
No. 2 -- Stefan Szacinski/Roger Anderson (LSU) d. Barrett Franks/Chris Madden (U-M), 8-5
No. 3 -- Olivier Borsos/Julien Gauthier v. Chris Cha/Shaun Bernstein (U-M) - 8-7 (Abandoned)

Order of Completion: Doubles 2-1, Singles 3-5-1-4*-6-2
* Clinched match




• Michigan falls to 0-4 all-time against LSU.

• The two teams previously met at the Key Biscayne Individuals from Jan. 7-9 earlier this season. It was an individual, non-team scored event. Michigan and LSU each won four singles matches at the competition, but the Wolverines managed to win three of four doubles matches against the Tigers.

• The match snapped Michigan's three-match road win streak. The Wolverines are now 5-2 in all matches away from Ann Arbor (4-2 in true road matches, 1-0 on neutral courts).

• The match against LSU was Michigan's final non-conference match of the season.

• Michigan lost the doubles point for the first time since Feb. 26 at Duke. The Wolverines won the last two doubles points (against Hawaii and Tulsa). Overall, Michigan is 3-8 in doubles play.

• The Wolverines are 2-1 when it wins the doubles point and 5-4 when it loses it. 

• It was King's ninth straight singles win. He has not lost a singles match since Jan. 22. He leads the team with 18 overall singles wins, and is now 16-3 all-time at the No. 1 spot of the singles lineup. Additionally, seven of his 11 wins in dual matches have been in straight sets.

• Rossi's three-match win streak in singles was stopped against LSU.

• Jung snapped a two-match losing streak with a win.


Michigan Head Coach Bruce Berque
On the match ... "LSU is good and they played particularly well today. They played hard and were more aggressive. I was disappointed in our level of play. We dug ourselves a pretty deep hole being down 3-0 quickly. I thought the four guys left on the court made a good run, but down facing that deficit, and needing to win all four matches is a tough task. I don't think we played well enough to win against a good team on the road."

On freshmen struggles ... "Barrett played pretty well today, he just missed a few opportunities. We're playing a good schedule and they are high up in the lineup, so it's tough. They all want it badly. Sometimes they get tentative. That's the biggest issue facing a tennis player at every level. You've got to go for your shots and be aggressive at the right time, and right now we are tentative. They are in a bit of a down stage right now, but they are putting in the work and will bounce back."

On quick turnaround vs. MSU ... "We're going to have to play well and be ready for their best because that's what we are going to get. They are a team that's playing with a lot of confidence on their home court. It's going to be a completely different environment from what we've been used to these last couple of days [playing outside]. We've got to compete at our very best and be aggressive from the start. And we need to execute at a high level to be able to walk out of East Lansing with a victory on Sunday."

Contact: Brad Rudner (734) 763-4423