California Faces Utah, Travels to Pacific Coast Doubles

Feb. 27, 2002

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UTAH, THEN LA JOLLA: The California men's tennis team, coming off it's huge upset win over Stanford on Saturday, returns to Berkeley to take on the Utes from Utah. Then the team is back off on the road again to the Pacific Coast Doubles tournament in La Jolla, where nine Cal players and one assistant coach will take part. Besides the win over top-ranked Stanford, the Bears also throttled the visiting Toreros of San Diego, 6-1, in their visit to Hellman Tennis Center last Wednesday.

CAL DEFEATS STANFORD FOR FIRST TIME SINCE 1991: The team upset top-ranked Stanford (7-1) 4-3 on Saturday afternoon to snap a 21-match losing streak against the Cardinal that dated back to May of 1991. The loss also snapped Stanford's 75-match home winning streak that began in 1996. The Golden Bears won the dual by capturing four of the six singles matches, including three crucial three-set victories.

At No. 1 singles spot, the Golden Bears' 125th-ranked John Paul Fruttero stunned top-ranked K.J. Hippensteel 6-3, 1-6, 6-3. California pulled off another big upset at No. 3 as Wayne Wong upset 16th-ranked David Martin 7-6, 3-6, 6-3. Cal's third three-set singles victory came at No. 5 where Robert Kowalczyk outlasted Sam Warburg 4-6, 6-3, 7-6. The Cardinal opened the dual by winning two of three doubles matches to capture the first point of the afternoon, as well as taking the first two completed singles matches to go up 3-0. California then roared back with four straight singles wins to capture the victory.

Read Cal head coach Peter Wright's first-hand account of the Bears' upset victory here.

THE SKINNY ON THE PACIFIC COAST DOUBLES: The tournament will take place all next weekend at the La Jolla Beach Tennis Club in La Jolla, CA. Entered for the Bears are the tandems of Fruttero and Kowalczyk, Ben Miles and Balazs Veress, Chase Exon and Conor Niland, Wayne Wong and Mik Ledvonova, and assistant coach Lan Bale will play with Patrick Briaud.

ABOUT UTAH: Utah is coming off a victory over St. Mary's which elevated the Utes to a 5-3 record. Playing in the number one court for Utah this season is Corrie Scheepers, who held off Gael Frank Schmitt, 7-6, 3-6, 6-2.

LAST WEEK AGAINST SAN DIEGO: Before the Stanford win, Cal defeated the San Diego Toreros, 6-1, at Hellman on Wednesday, making them a perfect 4-0 in front of the home crowd this season. The Bears took two out of three in the doubles matches, winning the point, with John Paul Fruttero and Robert Kowalczyk losing to Juan Cerda and Jason Pongsrikul, 8-3, in the lone doubles win for the Toreros. The other two doubles matches saw some exciting tennis as both Bears' doubles teams pulled out the wins. Chase Exon and Wayne Wong pulled out an impressive 9-7 victory over the pair of Martin Linusson and Rob Blair while Ben Miles and Balazs Veress narrowily defeated Martin Linusson and Rob Blair, 8-6.

In the singles portion of the afternoon, Fruttero dropped the Torero's top player in Ricardo Rizo by a 7-5, 6-4 mark. In addition, four other Bears won in straight sets, including a narrow 7-6 (4), 6-2 rebound victory for Miles. The Toreros lone point of the day came in a straight set victory for SDSU's Pongsrikul , 6-4, 6-1, over Cal freshman Conor Niland.

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