Cats Make History, Upset Bruins 4-3
April 11, 2010
TUCSON, Ariz. –The No. 35 University of Arizona men’s tennis team made history today by clinching the doubles point and three singles matches to earn their first win in school history against No. 10-ranked UCLA. The Wildcats upset the Bruins 4-3 today at the LaNelle Robson Tennis Center to clinch their first win against UCLA in 75 matches.
“I am so proud of this team,” said head coach Tad Berkowitz. “They fought so hard today and did what they had to do to win. The boys made history today.”
The Wildcats (13-9, 2-4 Pac-10) came out hungry in doubles to start the day after falling in a tough match on Friday against USC. The Cats dropped their first doubles match on court one, after the No. 41-ranked Bruins duo of Nick Meister and Amit Inbar topped Wildcat pair Borja Malo and Ravid Hazi 8-3.
On courts two and three though it was all Wildcats picking up the two wins to clinch the doubles point. On court two, Jason Zafiros and Geoff Embry battled Holden Seguso and Haythem Abid, but after a 6-6 tie the Wildcat duo took the next two points to seal the 8-6 win.
Senior Andres Arango and junior Jay Goldman sealed the other doubles point on court three for the Cats. Like Zafiros and Embry, the Wildcat pair tied it at 6-6 and secured the next two points for the 8-6 win.
After that Arizona carried their momentum into singles competition, which featured three of the six matches going into three sets. Arizona went up 2-0 after Malo downed UCLA’s Alex Brigham in the No. 6 slot in straight sets 6-3, 6-4. The junior took an early 4-1 lead in the first set and never looked back. In the second the Santiago, Chile native battled Brigham back and forth until Malo went up 5-4 and sealed the next point for the 6-4 win.
The Bruins got on board with their first point of the day on court four. UCLA’s Seguso topped Embry in two sets, 6-3, 6-4. In the first set, Seguso took an early 2-1 lead and then after a 5-3 lead, the junior edged out Embry 6-3. In the second, Embry fought back taking an early 3-0 lead, before Seguo answered with two straight points, then after a tie at 4-4 Seguso sealed the next two points for the 6-4 win.
UCLA tied the score at 2-2 after No. 90-ranked Arango fell in a tough match against No. 89-ranked Meister 6-3, 7-6 (4) in the No. 1 spot. In the first set, Meister went up 4-1 before Arango responded making it 5-2, Arango answered with another point, but Meister finished it at 6-3. In the second set, the two battled back and forth and the set featured three ties before Meister won the 7-6 (4) tiebreaker.
Goldman won his third singles match of the season and gave Arizona the 3-2 advantage after he upset No. 52-ranked Brooklyn on court two. The junior from Worcester, Mass. bounced back after falling 6-1 in the first set to clinch his second and third sets. In the second set, the two tied at 2-2, and after that it was all Goldman securing the next four points to notch the 6-2 win. In the third set, the two tied at 3-3, before Goldman earned the next three consecutive points to earn the 6-3 victory.
The match came down to the No. 5 spot of senior Ravid “The Hot Sauce” Hazi and freshman Maxime Tabatruong. The Rishon LeZion, Israel native clinched the win and the match for the Wildcats after he edged out Tabatruong in three close matches. The first set came down to a tiebreaker, where Tabatruong took a early 5-2 lead, but Hazi battled back to tie it at 6-6, after the two traded points back and forth and tied it again at 8-8, Tabatruong sealed the next two points for the 7-6, (10-8) tiebreaker win. Hazi came back with momentum dominating in the second set 6-1. In the third set, with his teammates behind him, the senior showed his determination and fought back after being down 2-3, to earn the next three points to make it 5-3, before Tabatruong answered with a point. After that Hazi clinched the next point to earn the 6-4 third set victory and the match for the Wildcats to make their mark in history.
The Bruins earned their third singles match point on court three after No. 102-ranked Amit Inbar edged out Zafiros in three close sets. Zafiros took the first set 7-5, but fell in the second set 6-2, and Inbar squeezed out the 7-5 third set win.
With the win, Arizona upped its record to 13-9, 2-4 Pac-10 to end conference play and the Bruins drop to 13-6, 3-2 Pac-10.
The Wildcats will next be in action on Sunday, April 18 when they host their final regular season match against non-conference Boise State at Noon.
No. 35 Arizona vs. No. 10 UCLA Results
No. 35 Arizona 4, No. 10 UCLA 3
1. No. 41 Meister/Inbar (UCLA) def. Malo/Hazi (UA) 8-3
2. Embry/Zafiros (UA) def. Seguso/Abid (UCLA) 8-6
3. Arango/Goldman (UA) def. Brooklyn/Stewart (UCLA) 8-6*
Order of Finish: 1,2,3
1. No.89 Nick Meister (UCLA) def. No. 90 Andres Arango (UA) 6-3, 7-6 (4)
2. Jay Goldman (UA) def. No. 52 Matt Brooklyn (UCLA) 1-6, 6-2, 6-3
3. No. 102 Amit Inbar (UCLA) def. Jason Zafiros (UA) 5-7, 6-3, 7-5
4. Holden Seguso (UCLA) def. Geoff Embry (UA) 6-3, 6-4
5. Ravid Hazi (UA) def. Maxime Tabatruong (UCLA) 6-7 (10-8), 6-1, 6-4*
6. Borja Malo (UA) def. Alex Brigham (UCLA) 6-3, 6-4
Order of Finish: 6,4,1,2,5,3