Trojans Fall To Irish In Preseason Match

Oct. 19, 2001

NOTRE DAME, Ind. - One day before the two schools will meet on the football field, USC men's tennis traveled to South Bend for a preseason match-up of their own. Despite winning two of three doubles matches, the Trojans fell to Notre Dame 5-2 on Friday afternoon at the Eck Tennis Pavilion.

In order to accommodate a concurrent USC-Notre Dame men's tennis match, Nos. 4-6 singles were played first, followed by all three doubles matches and Nos. 1-3 singles.

Notre Dame began the match by winning all three singles matches in the first set. At No. 4, sophomore Daniel Langre, who redshirted during the 2001 season, fought through a three set match but came up short to the Irish's Aaron Talarico 4-6, 7-6 (7-2), 7-5.

USC had its best performance in doubles by capturing wins on the second and third courts to earn its first point. Despite playing without the top-ranked duo of Nick Rainey and Ryan Moore, the Trojans still showed their strength with an 8-3 win by Langre and Damien Spizzo at No. 2, and a 9-8 (7-3) victory at No. 3 by freshman Teige Sullivan and sophomore Ruben Torres.

Notre Dame clinched the victory when #100 Luis Haddock-Morales upset Spizzo 6-1, 7-5 at No. 3 singles. With the match already decided, eighth-ranked Andrew Park earned USC's second point with a three-set victory over 38th-ranked Casey Smith at center court.

The match does not officially count as a dual match in either team's record, although all individual results are official for ranking purposes. In nine official meetings between the schools, the Irish have won just once -- in the 1992 NCAA semifinals. The teams have not met in an official dual match since 1993, but have occasionally matched up in fall exhibition play, including twice in the past three years.

Notre Dame 5, USC 2

Singles
(1) #8 Andrew Park (USC) def. #38 Casey Smith (ND) - 4-6, 6-3, 7-5
(2) #76 Javier Taborga (ND) def. #97 Prakash Armitraj (USC) - 7-6 (7-4), 6-7, 1-0 (11-9)
(3) #100 Luis Haddock-Morales (ND) def. #63 Damien Spizzo (USC) - 6-1, 7-5
(4) Aaron Talarico (ND) def. Daniel Langre (USC) - 4-6, 7-6 (7-2), 7-5
(5) Matthew Scott (ND) def. Ruben Torres (USC) - 6-3, 6-4
(6) Brian Farrell (ND) def. Teige Sullivan (USC) - 7-6 (7-2), 6-2

Doubles
(1) #34 Smith/Taborga (ND) def. Armitraj/Park (USC) - 8-6
(2) Langre/Spizzo (USC) def. #30 Haddock-Morales/Talarico (ND) - 8-3
(3) Sullivan/Torres (USC) def. Paul McNaughton/Ashok Raju (ND) - 9-8 (7-3)

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