No. 42 Stanford Bested By Sixth-Ranked USC In Second Day Of The Stanford Challenge

Feb. 2, 2008

STANFORD, Calif. - The No. 42 Stanford Cardinal dropped their second match of the weekend to sixth-ranked USC today, 5-1, in the final day of the Cashin Company presents: The Stanford Challenge. Stanford falls to 0-4, while USC improves to 5-0.

The match started an hour earlier than scheduled in order to take advantage of a window of clear weather. Still, rain caused two brief stoppages in play, but ultimately the match was completed. Play began with singles competition, while doubles was postponed until after singles, and ultimately cancelled due to rain.

Sophomore Alex Clayton, currently ranked second in the nation, captured Stanford's only point of the day at No. 1 singles, defeating ninth-ranked Robert Farah. Clayton found himself in an early hole, down 0-2 in the first set, but battled back to take his first lead of the set, 3-2. Clayton and Farah would split the next two games, but Clayton proved to be too much for Farah, capturing the set 6-3. Clayton would then continue his confidence into the next set, decisively defeating Farah, 6-1, to capture the match.

'Alex is ranked No. 2 and rightfully so, he's a very good player,' said head coach John Whitlinger. 'Farah has done a great job this year and this was a very good win for Alex. He's capable of beating anybody.'

Sophomore Richard Wire took the Trojans' Kaes Van't Hof to the tiebreaker in the first set, but could not capture the set, nor the next, losing 7-6, 6-4 in No. 2 Singles. Junior Blake Muller would also put up a valiant effort against the Trojans No. 43 Gary Sacks, but would lose 6-3, 6-4 in No. 3 singles.

'These two guys came up a little short today,' added Whitlinger. 'I really like how both of them are playing the game right now, though. As a team, we'll get better as the season goes on; the team will feed off a performance like this.'

The Cardinal will continue play with their third match of a seven-match home-stand when they next face the University of Hawai'i on Wednesday, February 6 at 1:30 p.m.

No. 42 Stanford vs. No. 6 USC
Taube Family Tennis Center
Stanford, Calif.

Singles Results
Order of Finish: 6, 1, 4, 2, 3, 5

1) Alex Clayton (S) d. # 9 Robert Farah (USC), 6-3, 6-1
2) Kaes Van't Hof (USC) d. Richard Wire (S), 7-6, 6-4
3) #43 Gary Sacks (USC) d. Blake Muller (S), 6-3, 6-4
4) Jack Poldma (USC) d. Ted Kelly (S), 6-3, 6-2
5) Jason McNaughton (USC) d. Kevin Kaiser (S), 6-4, 7-6 (7-3)
6) Abdullah Magdas (USC) d Phil Kao (S), 6-1, 6-0