Huskies Edged By Cal 4-3 In Pac-10 Finale

April 26, 2006

OJAI, CALIF. - Needing a win to secure a share of its second-straight Pac-10 title, the 20th-ranked Washington men's tennis team was upset by No. 23 California, 4-3, in both teams' regular season finale in Ojai, Calif., Wednesday.

The loss snapped a five-match winning streak for the Huskies (18-5), who finished the conference season with a 5-2 record and tied with Cal (15-6) for third place in the Pac-10 standings. The contest was a makeup match after the earlier meeting on March 31 was rained out in Berkeley.

Singles matches were played first, with the Huskies and Golden Bears winning three apiece. Cal was ahead 3-2 but a comeback win by UW junior Daniel Chu at No. 5 singles tied the score at 3-3 and sent the match into doubles play. That was where Cal excelled, quickly dispatching of the Huskies in the second and third positions to claim the victory.

Cal's No. 2 doubles team of Lennart Maack and Dean Wallace took care of Klaus Jank and Andy Kuharszky, 8-1, while Conor Niland and Ken Nakahara defeated UW's Jean-Noel Insausti and Mike Ricks on the third court, 8-3.

The bright spot for the Huskies came at No. 1 singles, where junior Alex Slovic, ranked 53rd, handed fourth-ranked Conor Niland his first singles loss of the entire season (7-5, 6-1). Niland had won 19 consecutive matches, which stood as the nation's longest winning streak until Wednesday. The win improved Slovic's record to 24-12 and was his ninth over a ranked opponent this season.

UW senior Pierre Metenier also picked up a singles win, defeating 74th-ranked Tyler Browne 7-5, 1-6, 6-3.

The Huskies will remain in Ojai, Calif., for the Pac-10 Individual Championships that begin Thursday, April 27 and run through Sunday, April 30.

#23 California 4, #20 Washington 3
Ojai, Calif.

Singles (played first)
1. (53) Alex Slovic (UW) def. (4) Conor Niland (Cal), 7-5, 6-1
2. Pierre Metenier (UW) def. (74) Tyler Browne (Cal), 7-5, 1-6, 6-3
3. Lennart Maack (Cal) def. Jean-Noel Insausti (UW), 7-6, 7-5
4. Daniel Sebescen (Cal) def. Andy Kuharszky (UW), 6-3, 6-2
5. Daniel Chu (UW) def. Ken Nakahara (Cal), 2-6, 7-6, 6-2
6. Dean Wallace (Cal) def. Klaus Jank (UW), 7-5, 4-6, 6-4

Doubles
1. Chu/Slovic (UW) vs. Pettit/Sebescen (Cal), DNF
2. Maack/Wallace (Cal) def. Jank/Kuharszky (UW), 8-1
3. Niland/Nakahara (Cal) def. Insausti/Ricks (UW), 8-3

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