LSU Gold

Men's Tennis Falls 4-3 To UCLA In First Round Of NCAA Regional

by Morgan English
Men's Tennis Falls 4-3 To UCLA In First Round Of NCAA Regional

AUSTIN, Texas — The No. 33 LSU Men’s Tennis team (16-15) fell by a score of 4-3 to No. 25 UCLA (15-7) in the opening match of the NCAA Texas Regional on Friday at The Edgar O. and Melanie Weller Tennis Center.

Danny’s Thoughts
“Tough match today,” said head coach Danny Bryan. “I have to give credit to UCLA. We had two match points at two doubles to clinch the doubles point, but they stepped up. In singles, they played very well in a few spots.”

“I’m thankful for our seniors. This wasn’t the year we had hoped for, but they kept the team together during a very tough stretch of the season and led us to the semi finals of the SEC tournament. I’m excited for the future of our program with returners Alessio, Rudy and Julien picking up straight set wins on courts 2,3 and 4.”

The Tigers dropped the doubles point in the match. On the No. 1 court, the No. 66-ranked duo of Julien Penzlin and Chen Dong defeated Spencer Johnson and Emon van Loben Sels by a quick score of 6-2. The Tiger duo led the team in doubles wins with 13 to wrap up the season.

On the No. 2 court, Alexander Hoogmartens and Govind Nanda defeated No. 59 Stefan Latinovic and Aleksi Lofman by a score of 7-6(2), leaving it up to the No. 3 court to secure the doubles point.

UCLA took the doubles point after Timothy Li and Jeffery Fradkin defeated Ben Koch and Welsh Hotard by a score of 7-6(3).

On the No. 4 court, Julien Penzlin defeated Giacomo Revelli 6-4, 6-0. Penzlin led the Tigers in singles this season and earned his 18th and final win to tie the team score up at 1-1.

Rudy Ceccon created a 2-1 lead for LSU after defeating Alexander Hoogmartens by a score of 6-4, 6-3. The freshman enjoyed a successful first season as a Tiger, with Friday’s win being his 11th this season.

Alessio Vasquez defeated No. 104 Spencer Johnson on the No. 2 court by a score of 6-4, 6-4, making the score 3-1 for the Tigers. Vasquez has bounced around courts one, two, three, and four this season and earned nine singles wins in his first year in Baton Rouge.

The Bruins added to the board after No. 32 Govind Nanda defeated No. 107 Stefan Latinovic by a narrow score of 6-4, 6-4, making the score 3-2, in favor of the Tigers.

UCLA tied the match at 3-3 on the No. 6 court after Jorge Plans Gonzalez defeated Welsh Hotard 6-0, 6-3, leaving it up to court five to decide who would advance to round two of the NCAA Regional.

The Bruins clinched the match on the No. 5 court after Gianluca Ballota defeated Chen Dong by a narrow score of 6-4, 6-4.

Season Reflection
LSU wrapped up the 2023-24 season with a 16-15 record on the year. The Tigers posted a 10-1 non conference record in the regular season, including a 4-3 win at No. 21 Memphis. The team started conference play off strong, defeating No. 16 South Carolina by a score of 4-2 in Columbia and rose as high as No. 19 in the ITA team rankings.

Despite losing the next 11 matches, LSU continued to show fight heading into the postseason and posted its best finish in the SEC Tournament in 17 years. The Tigers entered the SEC Tournament as the No. 13 seed and impressively made it to the semi-finals, winning three matches over three consecutive days and becoming the lowest seed to reach the semi-final stage.

In the first round, LSU defeated No. 12-seeded Ole Miss by a score of 4-1. In the second round, the Tigers defeated the No. 5-seeded Aggies by a narrow score of 4-3, advancing them to the quarterfinals. No. 4-seeded Auburn fell to LSU in the quarterfinals by a score of 4-3, advancing the Tigers to the semifinals. In the semifinals, LSU fell to the No. 1-seeded and SEC Champion, Kentucky, by a score of 4-0.

Stefan Latinovich, George Stoupe, Ben Koch, Chen Dong, and Welsh Hotard wrapped up their LSU career after playing under head coach Danny Bryan for the past two years. All five members have helped the program continue to succeed during their time at LSU.


#25 UCLA 4, #33 LSU 3

1. #66 Penzlin/Dong (LSU) def. Johnson/Van Loben Sels (UCLA) 6-2
2. Hoogmartens/Nanda (UCLA) def. #59 Latinovic/Lofman (LSU) 7-6(2)
3. Fradkin/Li (UCLA) def. Hotard/Koch (LSU) 7-6(3)

1. #32 Govind Nanda (UCLA) def. Stefan Latinovic (LSU) 6-4, 6-4
2. Alessio Vasquez (LSU) def. #104 Spencer Johnson (UCLA) 6-4, 6-4
3. Rudy Ceccon (LSU) def. Alexander Hoogmartens (UCLA) 6-4, 6-3
4. Julien Penzlin (LSU) def. Giacomo Revelli (UCLA) 6-4, 6-0
5. Gianluca Ballota (UCLA) def. Chen Dong (LSU) 6-4, 6-4
6. Jorge Plans Gonzalez (UCLA) def. Welsh Hotard (LSU) 6-0, 6-3

Match Notes
Order of Finish: Doubles (1, 2, 3); Singles (4, 3, 2, 1, 6, 5)

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