ALMOST saw Sampras/Martin today

10-30-2006, 01:18 AM
So, there was an exhibition today on the LSU campus to benefit some Katrina students. I'd been looking forward to it since April. We got there 45 minutes late, and when my brother gave the ticket person his credit card, it gor declined. Turns out that he just got a replacement in the mail, and that was his old one. :rolleyes: But, walking by the open door, I did see Todd Martin serve. He was just about 20 feet from me. :eek: Very cool. Didn't see Sampras, but my brother promised me that he'd take me to the Houston tourny this April and Cincy in 2008. So, all is not lost. :)

10-30-2006, 04:45 AM
I went to that!!! My friend and I snuck down to the good seats but some lady's big hair was in the way....

10-30-2006, 04:46 AM
So who won the match?

10-30-2006, 04:48 AM

10-30-2006, 04:49 AM
I went to that!!! My friend and I snuck down to the good seats but some lady's big hair was in the way....

Oh, so you live in Baton Rouge? Cool. While we were waiting, some lady came out and spilled chunks in the trashcan for a solid five minutes. BTW, what was the score.

10-30-2006, 04:52 AM
eww that sucks um it was 7-6 6-7 12-10

10-30-2006, 04:53 AM
I want to go to Houston but its the week after Spring Break so I don't think I'll make it

10-30-2006, 05:09 AM
I want to go to Houston but its the week after Spring Break so I don't think I'll make it

I wanna go to Memphis too but it's to close to prom and my New York trip in March. Bob and mike are supposed to be playing an exy in New Orleans, as are the WS, but I haven't read anything on that.

10-30-2006, 07:52 PM
Sampras Beats Martin in 'Duel Under the Oaks'

Courtesy: LSU Sports Interactive
Release: 10/29/2006

BATON ROUGE -- Pete Sampras defeated fellow tennis pro Todd Martin in the main event of the "Duel Under the Oaks" event held at the Pete Maravich Assembly Center.

Sampras’ win capped off a successful day of charitable events sponsored by Irene W. and C.B. Pennington Foundation that helped raise more than $400,000 for LSU Health Sciences Center students impacted by the hurricanes that ripped through Louisiana in 2005.

“This day wasn’t about winning or losing, we just wanted to give the fans an entertaining match for a good cause,” Sampras said. “Seeing the images and footage of the damage done by hurricanes Katrina and Rita were unbelievable. I am glad Todd and I could give the fans a nice show.”

Activities began at 9 a.m. with a tennis clinic for boys and girls, ages 7-17, at W.T. Robinson Tennis Stadium. Sampras and Martin joined both LSU men’s and women’s tennis teams in showing the youngsters the basic fundamentals of playing tennis. Prizes were given throughout the clinic and both Martin and Sampras signed autographs for the kids.

“The clinic went really well and was a nice start to a great day of tennis,” LSU men’s head coach Jeff Brown said. “The kids got to play tennis with not only our teams but Todd Martin and Pete Sampras really went above and beyond what they had to do by hitting with each kid. Thos kids have something they will always remember.”

Following the clinic festivities moved over to the Maravich Center for the tennis exhibitions. The first match was the white and purple challenge with members of the men’s and women’s teams. Danny Bryan and Megan Falcon represented the purple team and Ken Skupski and Hannah Robinson represented the white team. The match ended with a 6-all tie.

After the LSU exhibition, a celebrity doubles match took place featuring the teams of Martin and actor Scott Foley of the TV hit “The Unit” against Sampras and Baton Rouge native Wes Brown, currently staring in the movie “We are Marshall.” Martin’s team was coached by LSU coaches Brown and women’s coach Tony Minnis. Sampras’ team was coached by his sister, Stella Sampras-Webster.

Martin’s team took an early 1-0 advantage but Foley’s play did not satisfy Coach Minnis as he went to look for a new partner for Martin. A lucky young fan named Haley was chosen out of the crowd to pair with the tennis pro. Haley held her own forcing Sampras-Webster to also look for a new partner for her brother. A young boy named Dylan was chosen to replace Brown as the 14-time grand slam champion’s partner.

After a heated battle with the youngsters and tennis pros, the celebrities retook the floor to try and redeem themselves.

Brown overcame his early struggles as he helped Sampras to tie the match by a 2-all decision.

Following the celebrity match the main event took place as Sampras went heads up against Martin.

After Martin took a 2-1 lead, Sampras rallied back to tie the score at 3-all. The two tennis pros spilt the next four games to take the score to 5-all. Sampras gained the momentum from there as he took the first set by a 7-6 decision.

Martin returned the favor in the second set as he outlasted Sampras by a 7-6 decision.

The tennis pros continued their heated battle in the tiebreaker but Sampras took control in the end as he won the tiebreaker, 11-9, to take the match.

“Everybody was affected in some way by what happened with the hurricanes and like many others we felt compelled to help out,” Martin said. “It was a long day but I had a lot of fun and just glad we could put on a nice show.”

10-30-2006, 07:54 PM
Sampras wins LSU benefit match

Advocate sportswriter
Published: Oct 30, 2006

It was championship-caliber tennis mixed with Southern hospitality and charm.

In the end, the dominant color was green. Green as in the special green-set court laid down on the floor of the Pete Maravich Assembly Center, and the color of money raised for a worthy cause.

More than 6,800 tennis fans filled the purple PMAC seats and courtside chairbacks Sunday to watch 14-time major champion Pete Sampras take on old rival Todd Martin in an exhibition match billed as the “Duel Under the Oaks.”

Sampras won in three sets, taking the first set on a tiebreaker 7-5 while Martin won the second on a tiebreaker 7-2. Sampras won the third set (strictly on points, not games) 12-10.

But none of those numbers mattered as much as the more $400,000 event organizers said was raised to offset expenses incurred by LSU Health Sciences Center students in the wake of hurricanes Katrina and Rita.

“I’m almost in tears I’m so excited,” said Paula Pennington de la Bretonne, the primary organizer behind the event.

“It’s such an unbelievable day. The money we could raise for these students, the support of the Baton Rouge community. The students have been coming up to me and thanking me. It’s just a beautiful day.”

The day started with a youth tennis clinic attended by hundreds of kids at LSU’s W.T. “Dub” Robinson Tennis Stadium.

Sampras, Martin and Sampras’ sister Stella Sampras Webster (women’s tennis coach at UCLA) led the clinic, which included each young tennis player getting to play a point against Sampras and Martin.

“Todd and Pete really went above and beyond what they had to do by hitting with each kid,” LSU men’s tennis coach Jeff Brown said. “Those kids have something they will always remember.”

After a pair of early exhibition matches, the second featuring TV actor Scott Foley and Baton Rouge native and actor Wes Brown, Sampras and Martin took their temporary center court.

Unlike their often taut and tense matches on tour, both seemed at east throughout.

“I want to play well and win but at the same time you want to lighten up a little bit,” said Sampras, now 35. “When I was competing I had tunnel vision that made me stay on top of the game.

“People want to see me serve hard but they want to see you have fun with the kids or the umpire.”

Martin may have lost the match but won on showmanship points. Once he ran from his side of the net to Sampras’ side, pointing to a spot where he thought a ball ruled out had been in.

Another time, unable to reach a Sampras service ace smoked up the sideline, Martin went over and started shaking hands with fans seated nearby.

“When I get aced I’m going to come over and shake hands,” Martin explained.

“It’s a community in need and it’s always rewarding to do something for people who need it,” Martin said. “To have it supported like this and to hear over $400,000 going to the health sciences division of LSU, that’s great. I’m glad to be a part of it.”

Asked if he enjoyed himself, Martin deadpanned: “Not really, I lost, so it’s never that much fun. But it’s great to be on the court with Pete again. Hopefully we’ll do it again soon.”

Sampras, who retired in 2003, only began playing exhibition matches earlier this year. But he said more could be in his future.

“When you’ve been retired for a number of years you get a little restless,” he said. “It’s a work in progress being retired at 35. It sounds great, but on Monday morning you need to get up and go to work.

“Sometimes I have those moments when I’m lost playing golf or doing other things. But playing tennis is something I love to do. I’m good at it. The fans seemed to enjoy me playing again and I look forward to doing it more next year.”

Does that mean this could become an annual event? Could Sampras return for Duel Under the Oaks II?

“I don’t know,” de la Bretonne replied. “What did Pete say?”