Lubbock, Texas (Texas Tech Press Release) – Alexandru Buzelan has signed a National Letter of Intent to play tennis at Texas Tech University, announced Red Raider head coach Tim Siegel.
“We are excited for the opportunity to add Alex to the Red Raider Tennis family,” said Siegel. “He has the ability to play at this level, as well as compete for a spot in the lineup.”
Buzelan (pronounced Boo-ZEH-lun), a native of Constanta, Romania, began playing tennis at the age of seven and climbed all the way to the No. 2 player in Romania by the time he was 16. He maintained a Top 10 ranking through his final year of juniors at 18. He has also been ranked as high as No. 385 in the world by the International Tennis Federation.
“In the beginning, I did not know how many possibilities there were for me to play college tennis,” said Buzelan. “But after visiting the United States and Texas Tech, I realized that this could be a great opportunity for my future.”
Buzelan’s play led to him representing Romania at the Winter Cup in Minsk, Belarus, and at the European Junior Championship in Moscow, Russia.
At the Romanian Championships, Buzelan advanced to the semifinals in singles at both U14 and U16. He also advanced to the finals at the event in U18 doubles. In 2011, Buzelan finished third at the Romanian National Masters, as well as reached the semifinal at the National Championship, giving him the second highest European ranking amongst Romanian juniors.
In singles, he twice advanced to the quarterfinals of two ITF events – the Tivoli Trophy Timisoara in Wilson, Romania, and the Junior ITF Tournament in Sibiu-Sen, Romania. His best performance came at the Tirana Open in Albania, where Buzelan advanced to the semifinals in singles and the final in doubles.
“My hometown of Constanta is near the Black Sea and one advantage might be the sand near the water, said Buzelan. “It is a very good place to improve your footwork, because it is very soft and the feet have to do the maximum effort in order to keep running.”
During his visit to the United States last December, Buzelan also participated in the two events – the prestigious Orange Bowl International Championship in Plantation, Fla., and the Eddie Herr International Tennis Championships in Bradenton, Fla. At the Orange Bowl, Buzelan upset American Kyle Maunter, who is a five-star recruit ranked No. 27 in the U.S. He also had wins over the University of Denver’s Yannik James and ITF Junior Alberto Lim, who is No. 150 in the world.
Buzelan will report to campus in September.