Xavier Athletics



Gold Rush can't solve Embry-Riddle in NAIA quarterfinals

May 17, 2012


     MOBILE, Ala. — Adrian Bayh and Patrick Besch won a battle of top-4 doubles teams Thursday, then Bayh added a singles victory to carry second-ranked Embry-Riddle (Fla.) past No. 7 Xavier University of Louisiana 5-1 in the quarterfinals of the NAIA Men's Tennis National Championship.
     The Eagles (20-3), the national runner-up a year ago, advanced to the semifinals for the eighth consecutive year and improved to 12-0 this season against NAIA opponents. They snapped the six-dual winning streak of the Gold Rush (18-8), in the quarterfinals for the first time.
     Bayh and Besch, ranked first among NAIA doubles teams by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association, beat fourth-rated Loic Didavi and Zach Taylor 8-5 to put Embry-Riddle ahead to stay at 2-1. Bayh increased the lead to 3-1 with a 6-3, 6-0 victory against Viktor Swoboda at No. 3 singles, and Embry-Riddle clinched when Peter Francis rallied for a 4-6, 6-1, 6-1 decision against Amir Rahbar at No. 4.
     Xavier scored its point at No. 3 doubles, where Svoboda and Corey Huggins picked up their first victory of the season against a ranked opponent. They snapped the 15-match win streak of 20th-rated Simon Felix and Peter Francis with an 8-4 decision. Svoboda and Huggins closed with eight consecutive victories, giving Xavier a 22-4 record at that flight this season.
     Embry-Riddle got its other points from Chris Freeman and J.R. Leonik — whose 8-0 decision against Steffen Giles-Osborn and Sean Richardson was XU's first doubles shutout loss of the spring — and from David Spennare, a 6-2, 6-2 winner against Richardson at No. 5 singles.
     Xavier led in two of the three unfinished matches. Didavi, ranked eighth, led second-rated Freeman 7-6 (9-7), 3-2. Huggins also won a first-set tiebreaker and led Leonik 5-3 in the second set when the dual ended.
NAIA National Championship
(seedings in parentheses)

First Round — 1 p.m. on Tuesday, May 15
Cumberland (16) d. Warner (17) 9-0
William Carey (9) d. Graceland (24) 9-0
Concordia (Calif.) (12) d. Asbury (21) 9-0
Aquinas (13) d. Spring Arbor (20) 7-2
Bethany (Kan.) (14) d. Olivet Nazarene (19) 6-3
Lindsey Wilson (11) d. Hastings (22) 9-0
Point Loma Nazarene (10) d. Mobile (23) 8-1
Belhaven (15) d. Campbellsville (18) 5-4

Second Round — 1 p.m. on Wednesday, May 16
Fresno Pacific (1) d. Cumberland (16) 5-0
Westmont (8) d. William Carey (9) 5-4
Auburn Montgomery (5) d. Concordia (Calif.) 5-1
Azusa Pacific (4) d. Aquinas (13) 5-0
Oklahoma Christian (3) d. Bethany (Kan.) (14) 5-0
Vanguard (6) d. Lindsey Wilson (11) 5-3
Xavier (7) d. Point Loma Nazarene (10) 5-0
Embry-Riddle (Fla.) (2) d. Belhaven (15) 5-0

Quarterfinals — 1 p.m. on Thursday, May 17
Fresno Pacific (1) d. Westmont (8) 5-0
Azusa Pacific (4) d. Auburn Montgomery (5) 5-4
Embry-Riddle (Fla.) (2) d. Xavier (7) 5-1
Oklahoma Christian (3) d. Vanguard (6) 5-0

Semifinals — 1 p.m. on Friday, May 18
Fresno Pacific (1) vs. Azusa Pacific (4)
Embry-Riddle (Fla.) (2) vs. Oklahoma Christian (3)

Championship — 2 p.m. on Saturday, May 19

Xavier at Nationals (3-4)
May 12, 2009 (first round): Xavier 5, Oklahoma Christian 4
May 13, 2009 (second round): Auburn Montgomery 5, Xavier 0

May 18, 2010 (first round): Xavier 5, Tennessee Wesleyan 3
May 19, 2010 (second round): Fresno Pacific 5, Xavier 1

May 18, 2011 (second round): Vanguard 5, Xavier 3

May 16, 2012 (second round): Xavier 5, Point Loma Nazarene 0
May 17, 2012 (quarterfinals): Embry-Riddle (Fla.) 5, Xavier 1
     "We gave everything we had today and it just wasn't enough," XU coach Alan Green said. "I guess this is a learning process where we show progress every year. Next year should be better for us hopefully. We were down a bit after the match, but we showed that we are among the top eight teams in the nation. We will be back."
     It was the final collegiate competition for XU seniors Taylor, Giles-Osborn and Richardson.
     It was the fourth straight year in the tournament for the XU men, who set a school record for victories in a season. Ten of those triumphs occurred against ranked NAIA opponents, with a school-record four against top-10 teams. The national quarterfinal appearance was the first by an XU team in any sport in 39 years.


Gulf Coast Athletic Conference

National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics

The Xavier Gold Rush and Gold Nuggets compete in Division I of the NAIA (National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics) as a member of the Gulf Coast Athletic Conference (GCAC). Xavier fields men's teams in basketball, cross country and tennis and women's teams in basketball, cross country, tennis and volleyball.

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