In one of the most thrilling matches of the day at the NCAA
Championships, University of Mary Washington freshmen Evan
Charles and Donato Rizzolo won their first round
doubles match in three sets to advance to the national
quarterfinals on Friday. The freshman duo topped Kyle Gerber and
John Healey of Case Western Reserve, 5-7, 6-2, 7-6 (1) in gaining
All-America honors by advancing to the final eight.
In a rematch from the regular season in which Case Western won, 8-6, the Eagles dropped two points on serve in the first set in falling, 7-5. UMW jumped ahead early in the second and scored four straight points in a 6-2 second set win. In the third, UMW held serve twice in gaining a 2-1 lead, but Case broke the Eagles to assume a 3-2 lead, and carried the lead to 4-3. The Eagles broke serve, then both teams held for a 6-5 UMW advantage. Case held serve at 6-5 to force the match to a tiebreaker, which the eagles dominated, winning 7-1, with Rizzolo's ace for the match-clinching point the exclamation point to the hard-fought win.
The Eagles advance to face Mark Bloom and Patrick Lipscomb of the University of Redlands on Friday at 2:00 p.m., with the winner advancing to the semifinals. UMW's Paul Bristow and Dan Uyar won the NCAA Doubles Championship in 2004.