LINCOLN, Neb. - Creighton men's tennis senior Ryan
Norman stepped up with an inspired performance at the No. 1 singles position to
become just the second Bluejay in 20 years to claim a singles win in the top
spot against Nebraska during a 6-1 setback to the Huskers Sunday evening in
Norman, playing in his first career match at the top
singles spot, defeated Nebraska's Eric Sock in a tight three-set match. He
filled in at the top spot for classmate Billy Paluch who did not play due to an
injury suffered Saturday at Iowa.
After dropping the opening set 6-3, Norman fought back to
win the second stanza in a tiebreaker. The Wichita, Kan., native forced a
deciding third-set superbreaker by dominating the second-set tiebreak 7-1.
Then the Bluejay senior became just the second player in the
past two decades of Creighton men's tennis history to defeat the Cornhuskers at
the No. 1 singles spot with a third-set win in the superbreaker. Norman joins
his head coach, Tom Lilly, in the Creighton record books. Lilly topped the
Huskers' No. 1 singles player in 1993.
"Despite going down in the first set, (Norman) kept
fighting," Lilly said. "He played some of the best tennis I have ever seen him
play tonight. It's a great win for him and the team and is something hopefully
we can build on."
The Bluejays (1-2) fell behind early to the Huskers (3-2) who claimed the
doubles point with a three-match sweep.
Norman and fellow senior Sean Mathison pushed Nebraska at
the No. 1 doubles slot, dropping an 8-6 decision to the Husker duo of Andre
Stenger and Marc Herrmann. CU sophomore Elliott Baker and freshman Brandon Lee
fell 8-5 on doubles court two to NU's Brandon Videtich and Scott Elsass. The
Creighton freshman tandem of Anthony Rauschenbach and August Nysted dropped the
No. 3 doubles match 8-3 to Sebastian Florczyk and Bradford Zitsch.
Nebraska rolled out to a 6-0 lead with five straight-set
wins before Norman's dramatic victory at the No. 1 singles slot.
Baker claimed nine games for the Jays at No. 3 singles in
a 7-5, 6-4 loss to NU's Dusty Boyer. Mathison fell 6-3, 6-4 to Herrmann on
singles court two. CU freshman Quinn Dippel dropped the first set 6-0 to Husker
Andrew Dzulynsky but forced a second-set tiebreak before falling 7-6 in
straight sets. Nysted saw his first action of his Creighton career at the No. 6
singles slot with a 6-1, 6-3 setback to Zitsch.
Creighton returns to action on Saturday, Feb. 23 when it
hosts North Dakota at 6 p.m. CT.
Feb. 10, 6 PM
1. Ryan Norman (CU) def. Eric Sock (NU) 3-6, 7-6 (7-1), 1-0