Feb. 19, 2010
NORMAN, Okla. – Junior Ionut Beleleu rallied to clinch a 5-2 victory for No. 44 Oklahoma (4-1) over 20th-ranked Alabama (3-5) Friday, inside the Gregg Wadley Tennis Pavilion.
“For where we are at as a program it is a great win and a good sign,” OU head coach John Roddick said. “Alabama has proven they can play with the elite. They have played a very tough schedule and have been in several matches like this already.”
The Sooners struck first in the doubles portion as junior Ionut Beleleu teamed with freshman Lawrence Formentera to defeat Alabama’s Ian Chadwell and Michael Thompson, 8-3.
However, the Crimson Tide stormed back to take the doubles point after capturing wins at the No. 1 and No. 2 positions.
Oklahoma rallied in the singles portion, taking the first three points and a 3-1 advantage. Freshman Costin Paval became the first Sooner to secure a point for Oklahoma at the No. 3 position. He defeated Alabama’s Thompson, 6-2, 6-4.
Sophomore George Chanturia earned the second point for Oklahoma as he rocked UA’s Chadwell in identical sets, 6-1.
OU’s Formentera wrapped up the third point as he defeated Alabama’s Houssam Yassine, 7-6, 6-1.
The Tide brought the score to 3-2 after senior Andrei Daescu dropped a stunner to UA’s Saketh Myneni.
However, the story of the match came at the No. 2 position as Beleleu dropped his first set, 7-6, but rallied to beat Alabama’s Ricky Doverspike in the final two sets, 7-5, 6-1.
“Everyone has a lot of confidence in Johny (Ionut) Beleleu,” said Roddick. “For him to battle back the way he did is a huge thing for the team.”
Junior David Pultr gave Oklahoma its final point after he defeated UA’s Michael Thompson at the No. 4 position, 6-2, 3-6, 7-6.
The Sooners return to action Sunday, Feb. 21, when they host rival Oklahoma State. The match is set to begin at 6 p.m. inside the Gregg Wadley Tennis Pavilion.
“As every OU fan knows it is always an exciting match to play OSU in Bedlam,” said Roddick. “I know it is something the guys are looking forward too. They have learned that if they go out, play hard and do what they are taught to do then they will play well and when you play well you have chances to win.”
No. 44 Oklahoma 5, No. 20 Alabama 2
1. #61 Saketh Myneni (UA) def. #11 Andrei Daescu (OU), 6-4, 6-3
2. #84 Ionut Beleleu (OU) def. Ricky Doverspike (UA), 6-7, 7-5, 6-1
3. #80 Costin Paval (OU) def. Jarryd Botha (UA), 6-2, 6-4
4. David Pultr (OU) def. Michael Thompson (UA), 6-2, 3-6, 7-6(4)
5. Lawrence Formentera (OU) def. Houssam Yassine (UA), 7-6(4), 6-1
6. George Chanturia (OU) def. Ian Chadwell (UA), 6-1, 6-1
Order of finish: 3, 6, 5, 1, 2*, 4
1. Myneni/Davis (UA) def. Pultr/Paval (OU), 8-5
2. Botha/Doverspike (UA) def. Daescu/Blake Boswell (OU), 8-6
3. Formentera/Beleleu (OU) def. Chadwell/Thompson (UA), 8-3
Order of finish: 3, 1, 2