No. 3 UCLA Overpowers No. 4 Cal (18-4, 4-2), 6-1
April 19, 2003
Los Angeles, Calif. - The third-ranked UCLA menï¿½s tennis team picked up its 20th victory of the season Saturday, overpowering No. 4 Cal, 6-1, in the regular-season finale for both teams at the Los Angeles Tennis Center Saturday, April 19. The Bears now head to NCAAs with an 18-4 overall record, finishing third in the Pac-10 with a 4-2 mark. Stanford wins the Pac-10 outright after defeating USC, 7-0, Saturday.
The day started with both teams battling for the one point awarded for doubles play. The Bruins took the first match at court No. 3, as freshman Or Dekel and senior Robert Kowalczyk lost their first contest of the year to fall to 3-1. However, Cal quickly answered back with a victory at the No. 2 position as Conor Niland and Balazs Veress completed an 8-6 win over Tobias Clemens and Lassi Ketola. The point was decided at the No. 1 court, though, where 22nd-ranked Rodrigo Grilli and Marcin Matkowski of UCLA edged Calï¿½s Patrick Briaud and John Paul Fruttero, 9-8(5).
Things only got worse from there for the Bears, as the Bruins carried their momentum from doubles into singles play, taking the first set on all six courts. First to finish was court No. 3, where #120 Grilli defeated #111 Dekel, 6-3, 7-5, for a 2-0 UCLA advantage. UCLA took the 3-0 lead when #64 Erfan Djahangiri posted a 6-2, 6-4 decision over Veress at the No. 5 spot.
The dual match was clinched at the No. 1 position, as fifth-ranked Tobias Clemens defeated Fruttero, 6-3, 6-2, putting the Bruins ahead, 4-0.
With the match already decided, three matches remained on court. Matkowski finished off Calï¿½s Niland, 6-4, 3-6, 6-2, at the No. 2 position and within seconds, the Golden Bears picked up their only point of the day at court No. 4, where #58 Kowalczyk knocked off Bruin sophomore #35 Chris Lam, 4-6, 6-3, 6-2. Kowalczyk continued his torrid pace, claiming his eighth consecutive victory, 16th in the last 19, while improving to 11-0 in Pac-10 dual match play.
In the final match of the afternoon, Bruin senior Lassi Ketola went the distance with Calï¿½s Wayne Wong, winning 6-2, 4-6, 7-6(4).
Cal now focuses its attention on the Pac-10 Championships in Ojai, Calif., April 24-27. Following Ojai, the Bears will find out if they are selected to host the NCAA Regionals, May 10-11 at the Hellman Tennis Complex. The 16-team NCAA Championships will be held in Athens, Ga., May 15-23.
FINAL RESULTS#3 UCLA 6, #4 California 1
DOUBLES (UCLA wins the point)1. #22 Grilli/Matkowski (UCLA) d. Briaud/Fruttero (Cal), 9-8(5)2. Niland/Veress (Cal) d. Clemens/Ketola (UCLA), 8-63. Djahangiri/Francis (UCLA) d. Dekel/Kowalczyk (Cal), 9-7
SINGLES 1. #5 Tobias Clemens (UCLA) d. John Paul Fruttero (Cal), 6-3, 6-2*2. #40 Marcin Matkowski (UCLA) d. #33 Conor Niland (Cal), 6-4, 3-6, 6-23. #120 Rodrigo Grilli (UCLA) d. #111 Or Dekel (Cal), 6-3, 7-54. #58 Robert Kowalczyk (Cal) d. #35 Chris Lam (UCLA), 4-6, 6-3, 6-25. #64 Erfan Djahangiri (UCLA) d. Balazs Veress (Cal), 6-2, 6-46. Lassi Ketola (UCLA) d. Wayne Wong (Cal), 6-2, 4-6, 7-6(4)* Clinched the match
RECORDS: #4 California 18-4 (4-2, Pac-10), #3 UCLA 20-3 (6-1, Pac-10)
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