Greg Byrne's Wildcat Wednesday
Men's Tennis Falls to Oklahoma, 4-2
By: Arizona Athletics
Release: March 11, 2011
Photo Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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March 11, 2011

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TUCSON - The No. 42-ranked Arizona men's tennis team dropped a 4-2 decision today to No. 29 Oklahoma, marking only their second loss of the season at the LaNelle Robson Tennis Center. The Sooners swept all three doubles matches and claimed three singles matches to secure the match. Arizona's freshmen stepped up clinching two wins. The Wildcats trailed 3-2 heading into the final two matches, which came down to three-setters. In the end it was the Sooners' No. 28-ranked Ionut Beleleu edging out junior Jason Zafiros in the No. 2 spot to clinch the win.


"I know Jason is disappointed after his loss but I can't even count how many times he has stepped up and won huge matches for our team," head coach Tad Berkowitz said. "I am very proud of how our young freshmen are taking care of business."


The Wildcats trailed 1-0 to start the day after dropping all three doubles matches for just the first time this season. Arizona is 8-4 in doubles points won.


In the No. 2 spot, the Wildcat freshmen duo of Andre Vidaller and Mario Urquidi battled Oklahoma's Costin Paval and Peerakit Siributwong. The Wildcat pair built an early 2-1 lead but Paval and Siributwong rebounded, claiming five straight games to mark a 6-2 lead. Vidaller and Urquidi earned the next game, before the two traded games with the Oklahoma pair but Paval and Siributwong clinched the 8-4 win.


The Sooners earned the doubles point in the No. 1 slot. The Wildcat duo of senior Geoff Embry and Zafiros fell behind early 3-0 to the tandem of Tsvetan Mihov and Ionut Beleleu. The Wildcat pair earned a game and then traded games with the Sooners' pair before they built a 6-2 lead. Mihov and Beleleu clinched the next two games to win 8-4 and clinch the doubles point.


On court three, the freshman-senior pair of Kieren Thompson and Andres Carrasco took on Lawrence Formentura and Laurentiu Gavrila. The Wildcats trailed 4-1 and captured the next game before Formentura and Gavrila notched the next two games to lead 6-2 when Thompson and Carrasco retired.


In singles, it was the Wildcats freshmen Urquidi and Thompson sealing two wins for Arizona. The two have now won three straight singles matches for Arizona. Oklahoma took an early 3-0 lead before the freshmen marked two wins for the Wildcats.


Building the lead for the Sooners were all three of their ranked players. First was No.59-ranked Paval in the No. 1 spot. Paval topped No. 107-ranked Carrasco 6-3, 6-2 in straight sets.


Giving the Sooners their third point of the day was No. 105-ranked Siributwong who downed Embry in straight sets 6-3, 6-2 in the No. 4 spot.


With Oklahoma leading 3-0, Arizona's Thompson and Urquidi gave the Wildcats their first two points of the day in the No. 5 and No. 6 spots.


First was Urquidi notching straight sets against Formentura in the No. 6 spot. In the first set Urquidi breezed to a 6-3 win and in similar fashion the freshman powered his way to a 6-3 second set win.  Urquidi improves his singles dual match record to 6-1.


In the No. 5 spot, Thompson, like Urquidi won in straight sets, 6-3, 6-3 against Mihov. After leading 4-3 in the first set, Thompson captured the next two games to win 6-3. In the second set, the freshman built a 3-2 lead and secured three straight games to take a 5-2 lead, the two traded games before Thompson won 6-3.


With the score favoring the Sooners 3-2, it came down to courts two and three with Arizona's Zafiros and Vidaller notching the first set on both courts.


In the No. 2 spot, Zafiros battled No. 28-ranked Beleleu, clinching the first set 6-4. In the second, Zafiros dropped the set 2-6 and Beleleu clinched the third set 6-2 to seal the victory for Oklahoma. 


Vidaller faced Gavrila in the No. 3 slot capturing the first set 6-4. Gavrila clinched the second set 6-4, and Vidaller was up 4-2 in the third set when play was suspended.


The Wildcats drop to 8-6 (0-0 Pac-10) while the Sooners move to 7-2 (1-0 Big 12) and continue their winning streak to five matches.


Arizona is in action next on Tuesday, March 15 when they take on Indiana at home in their last non-conference match before heading into Pac-10 play. Doubles begins at 12 p.m. followed by singles.


Complete Results

No. 29 Oklahoma 4, No. 42 Arizona 2

LaNelle Robson Tennis Center -- Tucson, Ariz.



1. Mihov/Beleleu (OU) def.  Embry/Zafiros (UA) 8-2*

2. Paval/Siributwong (OU) def. Urquidi/Vidaller (UA) 8-4

3. Formentera/Gavrila (OU) def. Carrasco/Thompson (UA) 6-2 (ret.)

Oklahoma Wins Doubles Point

Order of finish, 2,1*,3

*Clinched doubles point



1. No. 59 Costin Paval (OU) def. No. 107 Andres Carrasco (UA) 6-3, 6-2

2. No. 28 Ionut Beleleu (OU) def. Jason Zafiros (UA) 4-6, 6-2, 6-2*

3. Andre Vidaller (UA) vs. Laurentiu Gavrila (OU) 6-4, 4-6, 4-2 DNF

4. No. 105 Peerakit Siributwong (OU) def. Geoff Embry (UA) 6-3, 6-2

5. Kieren Thompson (UA) def. Tsvetan Mihov (OU) 6-3, 6-3

6. Mario Urquidi (UA) def. Lawrence Formentera (OU) 6-3, 6-3

Order of finish, 1,4,6,5,2*,3

*Clinched the match

Bear Down Challenge M Ten