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Stick a Fork in the Competition: Arizona State Wins Campus Championships

March 9, 2009 10:35 PM

USTA Tennis on Campus Championships - Southwest
Las Cruces, N.M. - New Mexico State University Tennis Complex
March 7-8, 2009

Pool Play ResultsBracket Results

Arizona State's Kimber Bourstadt (Left) embraces Evan Ballos after the two clinched the championship with a mixed doubles victory against Arizona in the final.

Sparky was in full effect on the tennis courts this weekend in Las Cruces, as Arizona State claimed the USTA Tennis on Campus Championships - Southwest. The two-day event held in Las Cruces, N.M. at the NMSU Tennis Complex, brought together the best co-ed college club teams in a spirited competition which, in the end, saw ASU down rival University of Arizona 27-23 for the title.

Schools participating this year included University of Arizona, Arizona State University, University of New Mexico and New Mexico State University and University of Texas-El Paso. The format for the event was the World TeamTennis scoring system, which places emphasis on games, not sets won.

The first day of play in Las Cruces greeted the players with whipping winds, which made playing conditions a bit tricky...at best. But the schools played on, getting four rounds of play in on the first day. The schools that participated comprised 10 total teams (several schools split up squads) which made for two flights of five teams each. 

On Sunday, teams duked it out in atheir final flight matches before moving into bracket play to determine places. Arizona and New Mexico's team 1's each captured their respective flights, while ASU 1 and ASU team each finished second in their respective pools. 

In Pool 1, New Mexico's team 1 cruised, going 4-0 against its pool competitors, and ASU2 finished second, losing out to only UNM.

Schooling the competition: UTEP's Casey Acosta (top left), UNM's Alex Mansfield (top right), U of A's Khar-Keon Wong (bottom right) and NMSU's Jannette Sanchez (bottom left).
Pool 2 was harrowingly close, as just two games won separated first and third place. Each of the top three finishers (Arizona, Arizona State and UTEP) compiled a 3-1 record in pool play, so it came down to games won. Arizona had 100, ASU1 had 99 and surprise team UTEP had 98. UTEP had the minimum four rostered players needed to make a team, played solid, but narrowly missed the semifinals.

One of the semifinal matches pitted UNM versus ASU1, a repeat of the 2008 championship (won by UNM). It would be sweet redemption this year for ASU, which prevailed 24-20 in a slugfest. Arizona tripped up ASU2 in the other semifinal, 27-15, to set up an ASU-Arizona final.

The two teams had played earlier Sunday in the last pool match for both, a tight match won by Arizona, 23-17. ASU flipped the script in the finals however, winning 27-23. 

By virtue of their Section championship victory, the Sundevils secured a spot as the automatic qualifier to the USTA Tennis on Campus National Championships, held April 16-18 at the Surprise Tennis & Racquet Complex. Wildcard teams will be announced soon for the field of 64, and will hopefully include another team or two from USTA Southwest.  

Congratulations to all teams that did participate in Las Cruces. This year's USTA Tennis on Campus Championships - Southwest was the largest ever, with just under a 100 total players. A special thanks also goes out to the New Mexico State University, which allowed us use of their courts for the event.   

For more information on Tennis on Campus, or to help get your program started visit www.tennisoncampus.com, or contact USTA Southwest Community Tennis Manager Michelle Moyer at mmoyer@southwest.usta.com.

Students, don't forget to join the "USTA Southwest" group on Facebook and upload your photos from the event as well.

See you all in 2010!

USTA Tennis on Campus - Southwest Results
: Arizona State1 27, Arizona1 23
Third Place: University of New Mexico1  30, ASU2 13
Fifth Place: University of Texas-El Paso 24, NMSU 1 21
Seventh Place: Arizona2 22, UNM2 16
Ninth Place: Arizona3 26, NMSU2 19

2009 USTA Tennis on Campus-Southwest Champions: Arizona State University