2023 NCAA Championships: Valdosta State, Barry sweep into men's Division II QFs
The historic finale of the 2023 NCAA Championships began on Thursday at the USTA National Campus with Round-of-16 play in the Division II men's tournament. From May 11-27, the final rounds of the men's and women's events across Divisions I, II and III will be contested at the home of American tennis in Orlando, the first time in NCAA tennis history that all three divisions will crown champions at the same site.
On Day 1 in Lake Nona, top seeds Valdosta State and fourth seeds Barry University advanced to the quarterfinals with 4-0 sweeps, joining Cameron University, Wayne State (Michigan), the University of Indianapolis and Flagler College among the early winners.
Valdosta State blanked Fairmont State by winning all five completed matches, earning the doubles point with wins at Nos. 1 and 3 before singles wins from Rodrigo Carvalho at No. 2, Christian Wedel at No. 4 and Pedro Cordeiro at No. 6. Lamar Bartley at No. 4 and Christian Felline at No. 5 both led by a set and a break in their singles matches when the result was clinched.
"Even though we were playing a No. 16 seed, everybody here is very good. This was a very tough match," said VSU head coach John Hansen. "Fairmont State is a very good team, but we were a little bit more adapted to the weather than they were, which really helped us out. They have a young team and you can tell they are going to continue to improve and be back next year."
Valdosta advances to face Cameron in the quarterfinals on Friday, after the Aggies beat Northwest Missouri State, 4-1. That matchup is scheduled for 4 p.m. ET.
Also on the left side of the men's Division II bracket, three-time defending champions Barry cruised into the last eight without dropping a set across all nine matches against the University of Charleston. The Buccaneers were led by No. 1 singles player Alessandro Giuliato, a 6-0, 6-0 winner against John Giesberts at the top spot.
Barry's other singles winners were David Reime and No. 4 and Bastien Rieme at No. 6, neither of whom were part of the team's doubles lineup—a testament to the team's depth.
“I am happy with the way my team [played] today," said second-year Barry head coach Thomas Hipp. "We were focused from the very first point until the end, and were able to play the match with nine players to spread the workload. I hope we have the same focus and determination tomorrow for our quarterfinal match versus Wayne State.”
Read more on usta.com: Barry bids to extend DII dominance
Fifth seeds Wayne State defeated 12th-seeded Washburn University, 4-2, to advance to the quarters. They will take on Barry at 4 p.m. ET, at the same time as the Valdosta State vs. Cameron matchup. The winners of those two contests will square off in Sunday's semis.
In evening action, the third seeds from the University of Indianapolis swept past Jefferson University, 4-0, matching the scoreline of sixth seed Flagler College's win against Azusa Pacific University. Indianapolis and Flagler will next meet in the quarterfinals on Friday at 7 p.m.
In Thursday's late evening matches, second seeds Columbus State swept Le Moyne College, 4-0, before the seventh-seeded Hawaii Pacific University knocked off 10th-seeded University of Texas at Tyler for the last quarterfinal spot, 4-2.
For more information, including tickets, draws and schedule, visit the USTA's NCAA Championships homepage.