No. 11 Huskies Win Pac-10 Title

April 16, 2005

EUGENE, Ore. - History was made today by the Washington men's tennis team, as they defeated the Oregon Ducks 6-1 in the regular season finale to win a share of the Pac-10 Championship for the first time under the current conference format. The 11th-ranked Huskies (18-4) pulled even with the UCLA Bruins atop the Pac-10 standings at 6-1 and the two teams will split the conference title.

The Pac-10 switched to its current alignment in 1998, and since then Washington had never finished higher than fourth place. Prior to 1998, the conference was divided into north and south divisions, and the Huskies were consistent champions of the northern division, but since the divisions combined the Huskies have rarely been able to overcome the likes of Stanford, USC and Cal, all teams they have defeated this season.

In today's match, the Huskies responded from a rare doubles point loss to sweep all six singles matches against the Ducks. Seniors Alex Vlaski, Christoph Palmanshofer, and Peter Scharler all earned victories in their final Pac-10 duals. The senior trio has led the team all season and been integral in the program's success over the past four years.

19th-ranked Vlaski won the day's premier match at the top singles spot, taking down 14th-ranked Sven Swinnen 6-2, 2-6, 6-3. The win avenged a match earlier this year when Swinnen gave Vlaski the first blemish on his record in another 6-1 Husky win. Vlaski continues to close in on the UW career singles wins record, as his 105 is only three shy of the 108 all-time mark.

At No. 3 singles, No. 57 Palmanshofer defeated Manuel Kost, 6-2 and 6-2, for his team leading 22nd win of the year. Scharler went the distance at fifth singles against Arron Spencer, but pulled out a 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 win in the day's final match.

The Husky underclassmen were no slouches either on this day. 29th-ranked sophomore Alex Slovic gave UW its first point by beating Markus Schiller, 6-1, 6-2 at second singles for his seventh straight victory. Sophomore Daniel Chu chipped in with a 7-6, 6-4 win over Thomas Bieri at No. 4 singles. The win was clinched by freshman Andy Kuharszky in the No. 6 singles slot, where he overcame Oregon's Vlad Pino 7-6, 7-5.

Oregon's only point came via doubles play, where they ran away with the third doubles match and clinched the point at No. 2 doubles when Swinnen and Spencer defeated Vlaski and Palmanshofer, 8-6. The 27th-ranked duo of Slovic and Chu saved one match for the Dawgs, defeating Schiller and Pino, 8-2, at No. 1 doubles.

With the Pac-10 team title in hand, the Huskies will try to take the individual tourney by storm as well next weekend. The Pac-10 Championships in Ojai, Calif. will crown conference champs in singles and doubles. The tourney runs Thursday through Sunday, April 21-24. The NCAA Championships will begin in mid-May as the Huskies await to hear their seeding and if they will host first and second round matches.

Washington Men's Tennis vs. Oregon
4/16/05 - Student Tennis Center - Eugene, Oregon
No. 11 Washington 6, No. 66 Oregon 1

Doubles
1) (27) Chu/Slovic (UW) def. Schiller/Pino (UO), 8-2
2) Swinnen/Spencer (UO) def. Vlaski/Palmanshofer (UW), 8-6
3) Bieri/Kost (UO) def. Kuharszky/Ricks (UW), 8-0
Order of finish: 3, 2, 1

Singles
1) (19) Alex Vlaski (UW) def. (14) Sven Swinnen (UO), 6-2, 2-6, 6-3
2) (29) Alex Slovic (UW) def. Markus Schiller (UO), 6-1, 6-2
3) (57) Christoph Palmanshofer (UW) def. Manuel Kost (UO), 6-2, 6-2
4) Daniel Chu (UW) def. Thomas Bieri (UO), 7-6, 6-4
5) Peter Scharler (UW) def. Arron Spencer (UO), 6-4, 3-6, 7-6
6) Andy Kuharszky (UW) def. Vlad Pino (UO), 7-6, 7-5
Order of finish: 2, 3, 1, 6, 4, 5

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