Sept. 27, 2013
TULSA, Okla. – The Auburn men’s tennis team will be competing in its second tournament of the fall season this weekend, but it will be one the biggest for college tennis this year, the ITA All-American Championships in Tulsa, Okla.
Returning veterans, junior Lukas Ollert and seniors Daniel Cochrane and Dennis Lengsfeld will be competing in the qualifying singles portion of the tournament in hopes of reaching the main draw. Any player that wins four consecutive matches in the qualifying rounds will advance into one of the spots in the main draw of the singles championship. First matches for qualifying will be on Monday, Sept. 30.
Freshman Dante Saleh and sophomore Joseph Van Dooren will also make the trip to Tulsa as they will be competing in the pre-qualifying rounds. Just like in the regular qualifying, players will be vying for 16 spots to advance into the qualifying rounds. Those that win four consecutive matches on Saturday and Sunday will continue their quest in hopes of reaching the main draw of the singles championship. First matches for pre-qualifying will begin tomorrow.
Saleh and Van Dooren are coming off solid opening tournaments to their fall campaign at the SEC Fall Classic. In his first collegiate tournament, Saleh compiled a 2-2 record in singles, including getting a ranked win over veteran Mississippi State player, Malte Stropp. For Van Dooren, he earned three victories in the tournament and currently leads all Auburn players in singles wins.
Saleh will try to continue his strong start to the year by facing Mario Urquidi of Arizona in the first round of pre-qualifying singles with first serve at 9 a.m. The winner will face South Carolina’s Ben Barnette.
Van Dooren’s will have a bye in the first round and will play the winner of Texas’ Clement Horns and Konrad Zieba of Northwestern at 5 p.m. on Saturday.
As for the remaining Auburn players who won’t get action started until Monday, Ollert comes into this tournament as Auburn’s highest ranked player at No. 75 and went 2-1 in singles in Nashville last week. Cochrane, like his teammate, also hit the preseason rankings for the fall. He comes into the tournament at No. 105 and also went 2-1 last week. The ITA All-American Championships will be the first tournament action of the fall for Lengsfeld.
Cochrane and Lengsfeld will also be competing in qualifying doubles play starting on Monday as the duo entered the fall as the 30th-ranked doubles team in the country. Last season, the two players combined for over 40 wins in doubles play.
Pre-qualifying play for the ITA All-American Championships is slated to begin tomorrow at 8 a.m. at the Michael D. Case Tennis Center in Tulsa, Okla., and run through Sunday. Qualifying play will precede the main draw for singles and doubles on Monday and the final rounds will begin on Thursday, Oct. 3.
A full recap with complete results can be found on AuburnTigers.com following the pre-qualifying portion of the tournament.