Cougars Advance to Round of 16 in Regionals

Michael Eraso and partner Keaton Cullimore advanced to the Round of 16 Thursday in the Mountain Region Championships. (Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)

LAS VEGAS – No. 53 Patrick Kawka and No. 117 Spencer Smith reached the Round of 16, along with three BYU men’s tennis doubles duos, Thursday in the ITA Mountain Region Championships.

The Cougars made a strong showing in the first day of doubles, as the No. 3 seeded duo of senior Georgy Batrakov and sophomore Kawka only dropped a combined three games between their first two matches. The pair sailed past opponents 8-2 and 8-1 in the first and second round, respectively, to reach the Round of 16.

Senior Michael Eraso and freshman Keaton Cullimore defeated Scott Hinze and Peter Ramstromer-Pello of Weber State in the first round, 8-2, to advance and upset No. 13 seed Othar Kordsachia and Yannick Weihs of Denver, 8-3.

Junior Smith and freshman Francis Sargeant teamed up once again in fall play for the tournament, where they are the 10th seed. The BYU duo cruised to the Round of 16 after topping Mikolaj Caruk and Carl Kuscke of University of Montana, 8-3, in the first round, and Utah’s Justin Archer and BYU teammate freshman Dean Ormsby, 8-1, in the second.

Sophomore Travis Fillmore and freshman David Doehring paired up to compete but narrowly fell in the first round to No. 14 seed Luis Ramierz and Matej Stakne of New Mexico State, 8-5.

In the doubles consolation bracket, Fillmore and Doehring topped Montana State’s Kenny Dodd and Markus Schleuter, 8-4, to advance.

Doubles play will continue Friday as the Cougars look to advance to the quarterfinals.

BYU continued to make waves in the singles main draw, as five Cougars reached the Round of 32. Kawka and Smith defeated opponents and will face off against each other in the Round of 16 Friday.

No. 10 seed Kawka cruised past Idaho’s Andrew Dobbs, 6-3, 6-1, before topping Dmytro Mamedov (17), 6-2, 6-3, in the Round of 32.

No. 6 seed Smith defeated Mads Hegelund of New Mexico, 6-3, 6-2, to face off against Scott Sears (25). Smith secured an appearance in the Round of 16 after topping Sears 6-3, 6-3.

No. 1 seed Batrakov only dropped two games against Robin Chou of Arizona, cruising past his Round of 64 opponent, 6-1, 6-1.

Batrakov’s streak came to an end in the Round of 16 when Nevada’s Wessim Derbel (17) served Batrakov his second loss during fall play, 6-4, 7-6.

Cullimore (25) passed up Idaho’s Jose Bendeck, 6-4, 6-3, to secure a spot in the Round of 32 against New Mexico’s Jadon Phillips (4). Cullimore fell to Phillips 6-2, 6-3.

Eraso upset No. 17 seed Andrew Vidaller of Arizona, 6-4, 6-1 to advance to the Round of 32. There, he faced New Mexico’s Ben Dunbar but was unable to overcome the No. 7 seed, falling 6-1, 6-4.

In the Round of 64, Doehring and Sargeant fell to Conor Berg (25) of New Mexico and Tamas Batyi (13) of UNLV, respectively.

Doehring and Sargeant’s tournament play continued in the singles consolation bracket, both reaching the third round after victories in the second.

The Mountain Regional Championship is one of 12 USTA/ITA Regional Championships for NCAA Division I men's tennis taking place over the next two weekends of October at campuses throughout the country. The singles and doubles champions from each regional advance to the 2011 USTA/ITA National Intercollegiate Indoor Championships Nov. 3-6 at the indoor facilities at the USTA-Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing, N.Y.

For more information on the tournament, click here