USC's NCAA Run Halted In Quarterfinals
May 19, 2007
ATHENS, GA. - The 12th seeded USC men's tennis team took a shot at another NCAA upset on Saturday afternoon at Georgia's Dan Magill Tennis Complex, squaring off against fourth seeded Virginia in the NCAA Quarterfinals. With an early leg-up in doubles play, Virginia managed to hold off the Trojans, posting a 4-1 victory over USC to close out the Trojans' 2007 season in the quarters with a 23-3 overall record. That mark stands out as the fewest losses sustained since USC went 22-3 in 1994, when the Trojans won their 15th NCAA title.
'Virginia played great today,' USC head coach Peter Smith said. 'They were better in almost every part of the game and I thought they played with class and heart throughout the match. The doubles point ended up being huge for us. There was a just a centimeter difference between the two teams in that one, and who knows how much it meant. It just didn't happen for us out there today.'
For just the fourth time this year, USC came up just short of winning the doubles point. And as was the case in two of the previous losses, the point came down to a tiebreaker on court one. Just moments after USC's Jamil Al-Agba / Garrett Snyder got up with a double break and put away Angelinos/Singer 8-4 at the No. 3 slot, Virginia served up a similar effort at No. 2 over USC pair Dejan Cvetkovic / Gary Sacks. For Al-Agba/Snyder, the win at No. 3 got the pair back in the win zone, which had been interrupted for the first time two days earlier against Notre Dame. Al-Agba/Snyder held a perfect 9-0 record until that Round of 16 loss, but the pair improved their mark to 10-1 with Saturday's victory. With the doubles point hovering at 1-1, the focus shifted to the No. 1 match between USC's #43 Robert Farah / Kaes Van't Hof and the nation's #2 team of Devvarman/Huey. The duos stayed on serve right down to the wire, leveled at 8-8 after Farah's service game went to deuce twice. In the tiebreaker, USC got behind 3-1 before tacking up four straight points to take the lead 5-3. With Van't Hof serving, Farah put away a volley to move the Trojans up 6-4, only to see the Virginia pair claim the next four points and steal away the match with an 8-6 tiebreaker win that secured the highly sought-after doubles point for Virginia.
Although it had tacked up the first point on the board, Virginia wasn't in control yet. Robert Farah tripped things up for the fourth seed when he pounded out a decisive 6-1, 6-4 win over Marko Miklo from his No. 4 slot, marking the Trojan freshman's fourth straight singles win for a 4-0 mark in his debut in the NCAA Championships. Virginia's power at the top of the lineup shined through soon after, however. At the No. 2 position, #25 Treat Huey topped USC's #52 Dejan Cvetkovic 6-3, 6-1 to get Virginia ahead 2-1, and then at the No. 1 spot the nation's #2 singles player, Somdev Devvarman beat USC's #36 Jamil Al-Agba 6-1, 6-2. Both Trojan seniors now move on into the NCAA Singles Championships, which begin May 23 in Athens, Ga.
With Virginia leading 3-1, there were three matches remaining with potential third sets in the works. At No. 5, freshman Gary Sacks had his Virginia opponent Houston Barrick locked up in a second set tiebreaker for a shot at pushing through to a third, and freshman Jason McNaughton had already forced a third at No. 6. Playing at No. 3, USC junior Kaes Van't Hof had barely slipped in a first-set tiebreaker and was holding serve against a hard-hitting #115 Dominic Inglot. Inglot got up a break at 4-3, however, and went on to win the match 7-6 (4), 6-3 to clinch Virginia's fourth point and move his squad into the NCAA Semifinals. That left the remaining action on courts five and six suspended, as USC's season closed down with a 23-3 overall record. That record marks the biggest turnaround in USC history, as the Trojans went 8-14 in 2006 before opening their 2007 campaign with 11 straight wins to tie the best season start since 1988. With a 3-1 mark this year, USC's overall record in NCAA competition is now 59-28 in 29 appearances.
#4 Virginia 4, #12 USC 1
May 19, 2007 - Athens, Ga.
(1) #2 Devvarman/Huey (UVA) def. #43 Farah/Van't Hof (USC) - 9-8 (6)
(2) Inglot/Barrick (UVA) def. Cvetkovic/Sacks (USC) - 8-4
(3) Al-Agba/Snyder (USC) def. Angelinos/Singer (UVA) - 8-4
Virginia wins doubles point.
Order of finish: 3, 2, 1
(1) #2 Somdev Devvarman (UVA) def. #36 Jamil Al-Agba (USC) - 6-1, 6-2
(2) #25 Treat Huey (UVA) def. #52 Dejan Cvetkovic (USC) - 6-3, 6-1
(3) #115 Dominic Inglot (UVA) def. #63 Kaes Van't Hof (USC) - 7-6 (4), 6-3
(4) Robert Farah (USC) def. Marko Miklo (UVA) - 6-1, 6-4
(5) Gary Sacks (USC) vs. Houston Barrick (UVA) - 4-6, 6-6 (3-3) susp.
(6) Jason McNaughton (USC) vs. Ted Angelinos (UVA) - 4-6, 6-1, 0-1 susp.
Order of finish: 4, 2, 1, 3
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