Pac-10 Tennis Championships Doubles Underway, Singles Continue
April 24, 2009
OJAI, Calif. -- The fog and mist were present again as the second day of the 2009 Pac-10 Individual Tennis Championships were played in Ojai, Calif., Friday. The singles action continued with quarterfinals matches taking place for both the men and women. Robert Farah of USC and Hilary Barte of Stanford, the top seeds in the tournament, breezed into the semifinals with straight-set wins. Friday also maked the start of the doubles competition, which brought surprises on both sides.
Two freshman have played their way into the men's championship singles semifinials, Stanford's Bradley Klahn and USC's Steve Johnson. Klahn battled UCLA junior Matt Brooklyn, picking up the victory, 7-6, 6-4.Johnson finds himself in the semis after a tough match-up with California's Pedro Zerbini. The Orange, Calif., native earned the win, 7-6, 3-6, 6-3 in a hard-fought match. Last year's Pac-10 Player and Freshman of the Year, Alex Clayton, easily defeated Andres Carrsco of Arizona, 6-1, 6-1, to advance to the next round. Farah took out UCLA's Michael Look, 6-4, 6-4, to complete the final four.
Only Stanford and USC players remain as Klahn will face the 2008 singles runner-up, Farah, and Clayton will take on Johnson, Saturday, for a chance to play for the championship.
Klahn contiued to play well in his first Conference championships as he and doubles partner Ryan Thacher pulled off perhaps the biggest upset of the day. The Cardinal duo advanced to the doubles quarterfinals with an8-5 win over UCLA's team of Brooklyn/Holden Seguso. There, the freshman pair took out the country's second-ranked doubles team, Farah/Johnson, 8-6, to move into the semifinals.
Washington's tandem of Derek Drabble and Martin Kildahl, ranked No. 61 nationally, came up victorious over Cal's 18th-ranked team of Zerbini/Geoffrey Chizever, 8-5. On the other side of the bracket, USC's Abdullah Magdas and Daniel Nguyen defeated Cal's Zach Gilbert and Bozhidar Katsarov, 8-3, before edging Stanford's team of Richard Wire and Blake Muller, 9-8 (4). The Trojan pair will take play rival UCLA's team on Michael Look and Eugen Bradzil in the semifinals on Saturday.
On the women's side, USC senior Amanda Fink is the only upperclassman still standing. She took out Stanford's Jessica Nguyen in straight sets, 6-1, 6-1. She will face Barte on Saturday for a chance to advance to the championship final for the second straight season.
Arizona freshman Natasha Marks is making a name for herself. After upsetting Arizona State's Kelcy McKenna in the first round, the Nottingham, England, native sent Cal senior Bojana Bobusic home with a 6-2, 6-3 victory. Marks will take on Cal sophomore Marina Cossou in the semifinals. Cossou rallied to come-from-behind to take out UCLA junior Yasmin Schnack, 4-6, 7-6, 6-4.
In doubles, USC's Fink and Gabriela Niculescu, last year's doubles champion, set out to defend their title. In the first round, the Trojan pair defeated Stanford's Logan Hansen and Veronica Li, 8-5. In the quarterfinals, the Trojans topped Carling Seguso and Stephanie Wetmore of UCLA, 8-6.
Arizona State advances two teams into the championships doubles semifinals. McKenna and Micaela Hein squeaked past Oregon's Cecilia Olivos and Pavlina Smatova, 9-8 before defeating Cal's Bobusic and Stephany Chang, 8-6. McKenna and Hein will face Fink/Niculescu in the next round.The other Sun Devil pair to advance to Saturday are sisters Laila and Nadia Abdala. They took out rival Arizona's Marks and Claire Riestch, 8-5, before edging UCLA's Ashley Joelson and Nina Pantic, 9-7.
The final doubles team in the semifinals is Stanford's Nguyen and Carolyn McVeigh. The pair advanced after third-ranked Schnack and Andrea Remynse of UCLA retired. The Cardinal will face the Abdala sisters on Saturday.
Men's and Women's singles and doubles semifinal matches will be played Saturday begining at 11 a.m.