No. 17 Trojans Upset No. 4 Bruins, 5-2
March 1, 2005
LOS ANGELES - The No. 4-ranked UCLA men's tennis team dropped just its second match of the season Tuesday, falling upset to No. 17 USC, 5-2 in a non-conference match at the Marks Tennis Stadium. With the loss, UCLA falls to 12-2 on the season, while USC improves to 6-5. The Trojans also gain 2.5 points in the race for the Lexus Gauntlet Trophy.
The day started well for the Bruins, who claimed the doubles point for the 11th time in 14 matches this season. UCLA's Benjamin Kohlloeffel and Luben Pampoulov, ranked No. 44 nationally, defeated Drew Hoskins and Kaes Van't Hof, 8-5 at the top spot. Philipp Gruendler and Chris Lam were also victorious at the No. 3 position, defeating Adams Loucks/Brian Wright, 8-4.
Once singles play began, the Bruins looked to be in the driver's seat, taking the first set on four of six courts. UCLA took a 2-0 lead when Lam posted a 6-4, 6-0 victory over Wright at the No. 4 position. From that point on however, the Trojans took control of the contest, winning the next three matches to take a 3-2 lead. Next to finish was court No. 6, where Loucks battled back from a rough first set to down Gruendler, 2-6, 7-5, 7-5. Court No. 2 was next off, as Hoskins, ranked 51st nationally, upset 10th-ranked Kohlloeffel, 1-6, 6-4, 6-1. It marked only the fourth loss of the season for Kohlloeffel, who is now 29-4 overall. The Trojans took the lead when Johan Berg upset No. 42 Kris Kwinta, 2-6, 6-4, 6-4.
The match was clinched at court No. 5, where Van't Hof was able to register a 6-3, 3-6, 7-5 decision over No. 89 Alberto Francis. Once the match was clinched, Pampoulov, who has been nursing an injury, retired from his match with Jamil Al-Agba. Al-Agba was leading 6-4, 4-6, 4-3 at that point.
UCLA will get a break from dual-match competition this weekend, traveling to La Jolla, Calif. for the Pacific Coast Doubles Championships.