Bruins Beat Defending NCAA Champion USC, 6-1
Jan. 31, 2003
LOS ANGELES - In its first true test of the 2003 season, the No. 1-ranked UCLA men's tennis team won the doubles point then took five of six singles matches en route to a 6-1 decision over No. 7 USC Friday at the Trojan's Marks Tennis Stadium. With the win, the Bruins remain undefeated at 4-0, while USC falls to 3-2.
UCLA's top doubles team of Rodrigo Grilli and Marcin Matkowski set the pace for the afternoon, teaming for an 8-0 victory over USC's Prakash Amritraj/Daniel Langre. Following that win, the Bruins went on to sweep the two remaining doubles matches, as Tobias Clemens and Lassi Ketola defeated USC's Johan Berg/Ruben Torres 8-6 in the No. 2 spot, and Erfan Djahangiri and Alberto Francis knocked off Parker Collins/Whit Livingston, 8-5 at the No. 3 position.
In singles play, the Bruins captured five of six matches, dominating the bottom three courts. At the No. 4 position, Djahangiri posted a 6-3, 6-1 win over Torres, and at No. 4 singles, Bruin sophomore Chris Lam knocked off Collins, 6-2, 6-2. The other Bruin to win in straight sets Friday was Ketola, who downed USC's Scott Patterson, 6-2, 6-1.
Both Matkowski and Grilli were forced to come from behind but ended up winning their matches in three. After dropping the first set, Matkowski rallied for a 2-6, 7-6(7), 7-6(2) win over Berg at the No. 2 position. Grilli, who was down 4-1 in the third set against Langre at the No. 3 spot, came back to win 6-3, 1-6, 7-5.
USC's lone point on the day came at No. 1 singles, where Amritraj upset No. 12-ranked Clemens, 6-4, 6-2.
The Bruins will not be in action again until Feb. 5 when they host San Diego at the Los Angeles Tennis Center beginning at 1:30 p.m.