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USU tennis: men's tennis to compete at ITA Regionals

Mitch Johnson readies to swing.
Mitch Johnson readies to swing.
Rick Parker, USU

Utah State men's tennis is set to compete at the ITA Regionals in singles and doubles from Monday through Friday, Oct. 15-19, in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Six Aggies will travel to the event in a tournament that includes netters from 17 other schools in the ITA Mountain region. Other schools competing include Mountain West opponents Air Force, Boise State, Nevada, New Mexico, UNLV and in-state rivals BYU, Southern Utah, Utah and Weber State.

Three netters ranked in the ITA singles preseason poll will be competing in the ITA Regionals in Utah's No. 65 Dan Little and No. 124 David Micevski, as well as New Mexico's No. 105 Ricky Hernandez Tong. In doubles, two pairs have been ranked in Idaho State's Peter Trhac and David Felix at No. 55 and Utah's Russell Benkim and Randy Cory at No. 56.

USU enters the tournament after competing two weeks ago at the Boise State hosted-Dar Walters Fall Classic, where it was led by freshman Mitch Johnson, who posted a 2-2 singles record. Johnson collected his first collegiate singles wins as he advanced to the quarterfinals of the Blue Bracket by defeating Air Force's Jordan Azuma in the opening round in straight sets (6-3, 6-4), followed by a three-set win (3-6, 6-3, 6-2) against Ignatius Castelino of Denver in the second round. In the quarterfinals, Johnson lost to Gonzaga's Emilio Moreno in straight sets (6-1, 6-2).

Other Aggies to compete in the tournament included junior Sergiu Bucur, who went 2-1 in singles play, while freshmen Daniel Bushamuka and Rithvik Bollipalli both went 1-3 in singles play. In doubles play, Bucur and Bollipalli, as well as the duo of Bushamuka and Johnson, went 0-1.