Men's Tennis Invited to NCAA Championships; Will Face Washington in 1st Round
May 1, 2012
RALEIGH, N.C. - The NC State men's tennis team received the fifth NCAA Championship bid in school history on Tuesday evening and will face No. 26 Washington next week at host Pepperdine in Malibu, Calif.
The matchup between the No. 39 Wolfpack (20-9) and Huskies is set for 2 p.m. (EDT) on Friday, May 11, at Pepperdine's Ralphs Straus Tennis Center and will be the first meeting between the two schools. The winner will advance to play the winner of the first-round match between the host school and Green Bay.
The No. 39 Wolfpack (20-9) finished sixth in the ACC regular-season standings and advanced to the quarterfinals of the ACC Men's Tennis Championship in Cary, N.C., last week, where it lost to eventual runner-up Duke.
"Our guys are extremely excited for the opportunity to be in the tournament and to travel to play Washington," said head coach Jon Choboy. "We don't know a lot about Washington at this point, but we have some time to scout them out and get prepared."
The Huskies (15-8) finished fifth in the Pac-12 and advanced to the quarterfinals of the inaugural conference championship, where they lost to No. 14 California by a narrow 4-3 margin. This will be the 18th consecutive bid for Washington, which is led by veteran head coach Matt Anger.
This is the Wolfpack's third NCAA bid under Choboy, who is in his 10th season at State. He also took the Pack to back-to-back appearances in 2006 and '07, with the latter team advancing to the NCAA Elite Eight in Athens, Ga., for the best postseason finish in school history. The Pack also appeared in 1978 and '99.
NC State is one of six ACC teams to make the field, along with third-seeded Virginia, eighth-seeded Duke, 15th-seeded North Carolina, Florida State and Virginia Tech.
The Pack has been led all season by the senior-heavy top of the lineup, with No. 33 Jaime Pulgar (20-5) leading the way. Pulgar, just three wins shy of the school single-season record for victories, was recently named All-ACC for the third consecutive season.
Fellow seniors Dominic Hodgson and Julian Sullivan own identical 15-8 records this spring. The Wolfpack has also gotten strong contributions from freshmen Robbie Mudge (20-6) and Austin Powell (16-6).
The Huskies have one ranked player, No. 22 junior Kyle McMorrow.
Of the Wolfpack's 29 dual matches this spring, 13 were against teams that were selected for the field. The Pack was 5-2 against non-conference teams in the field, with wins over East Tennessee State, South Carolina, Northwestern, Virginia Commonwealth and Binghamton.
"This is why we wanted to play such a rigorous schedule in the spring - to be prepared for the NCAA Championships," Choboy said. "We faced a lot of good teams inside and outside the ACC and that will help us when we face Washington."
Schedule of events
Friday, May 11 | First Round
Saturday, May 12 | Second Round