Pasha Takes Audi Napa Valley Classic Title
Nathan Pasha

Sept. 23, 2012

ST. HELENA, Calif.-----University of Georgia sophomore Nathan Pasha won four matches on Sunday to win the Audi Napa Valley Tennis Classic. 

Pasha first defeated Stanford’s No. 81-ranked Matt Kandath, 6-3, 6-2, to win Group 2 of pool play with a 3-0 record and advance to the shootout round. The field was divided into eight pools, with each winner advancing to the PlayBrave USTA Wild Card Shootout, a single-elimination, 10-point tiebreak tournament.

In his quarterfinal match, Pasha downed Lloyd Glasspool of Texas, 10-8, then defeated his USTA junior opponent, 10-7, to reach the final. Pasha topped Texas’ Soren Hess-Olesen, 16-14, to win the title and earn a USTA-sponsored wild card into a pro circuit event to be determined. 

“I just wanted to play the points loose and not tighten up,” said Pasha. “It’s weird because when you’re down in a tiebreaker it’s almost like a nothing-to-lose mentality and you just go for it. On his match point I ended up coming in somehow and fortunately I ended up winning it.
“It was on my match points where I was playing it tentative and he ended up playing aggressive. I was finally able to just pull it out when that final match point came.”

Bulldog freshman Ben Wagland won Group 4 with a 4-6, 7-5, 6-4 win over Harvard’s Shaun Chaudhuri. He reached the semifinals of shootout competition with a 10-4 win over California’s Mads Engstedt, then was edged by Hess-Olesen in the semis, 10-8.

“Nathan played tremendously well and made great progress this weekend,” said Georgia associate head coach Will Glenn. “He played big on the big points and looks to be on his way to great success this year. Ben also had an outstanding tournament. He played through some pain and showed a lot of fight. Our guys competed the right way and had a great tournament.”  

In other action, junior Garrett Brasseaux notched a 4-6, 6-4, 1-0(8) win over a USTA junior player, and Eric Diaz fell to Engsted, 6-2, 6-1, in pool play.

Pasha also won the tournament’s Minor Sportsmanship Award and was named the Most Outstanding Player.

Next up for the Bulldogs is the ITA All-American Championships Oct. 1-6 in Tulsa, Okla.



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