No. 15 Men's Tennis Holds On For 4-3 Road Win At No. 11 Illinois

March 23, 2010

CHAMPAIGN, Ill.- Back on the court for the first time in two weeks, No. 15 Stanford picked up an impressive 4-3 victory over No. 11 Illinois on Tuesday afternoon, kicking off a two-game Midwest road swing and a stretch that features three matches over five days.

After suffering hard-fought 4-3 defeats to No. 27 California and No. 5 USC last month at home, Stanford (9-3, 0-0 Pac-10) came out on top this time by a 4-3 count against Illinois (10-6, 2-0 Big Ten), a program that has been a fixture in the top-20 throughout the year.

It was Stanford's second dual match win in a row, following up a 4-0 shutout of Utah back on Mar. 3 in the Cardinal's most recent contest. Meanwhile, Illinois saw its season-high six-match winning streak come to an end.

After sweeping the doubles point to take a 1-0 lead, Stanford snapped a 2-2 tie with victories at the top two spots of the lineup to secure the win.

The Cardinal showed no rust early on, cruising to easy wins at all three doubles spots for a 1-0 advantage. In a battle of top-10 duos, second-ranked Bradley Klahn and Ryan Thacher dispatched of sixth-ranked Marek Czerwinski and Dennis Nevolo 8-4 at the No. 1 position.

A shuffle of the singles lineup resulted in a victory, as Denis Lin rallied for a 2-6, 6-2, 6-1 win over Bruno Abdelnour at the No. 6 spot to put Stanford in front 2-0.

But the Fighting Illini bounced back with wins on courts four and three, respectively, to knot the match at 2-2.

Klahn then posted a 7-5, 3-6, 6-1 triumph over Nevolo at the No. 1 spot, increasing Stanford's lead to 3-2 with three matches remaining.

Ryan Thacher and Richard Wire had pushed their opponents to three sets on courts three and five, respectively, but Alex Clayton made it official when he provided the clincher at No. 2 in the form of a 7-6 (7-4), 7-6 (12-10) victory.

Stanford plays at No. 28 Michigan on Thursday afternoon, before returning home on Saturday to take on No. 32 Arizona at 1 p.m.

No. 15 Stanford 4, No. 11 Illinois 3

1) No. 2 Klahn/Thacher (STAN) d. No. 6 Czerwinski/Nevolo (ILL) 8-4
2) No. 30 Clayton/Wire (STAN) d. Hoh/Hamui (ILL) 8-3
3) Lin/Matt Kandath (STAN) d. Abdelnour/Souza (ILL) 8-4
Order of Finish: 2, 3, 1

1) No. 8 Bradley Klahn (STAN) d. No. 36 Dennis Nevolo (ILL) 7-5, 3-6, 6-1
2) No. 35 Alex Clayton (STAN) d. No. 64 Marek Czerwinski (ILL) 7-6 (4), 7-6 (12-10)
3) Johnny Hamui (ILL) d. No. 65 Ryan Thacher (STAN) 6-3, 3-6, 6-3
4) No. 77 Abe Souza (ILL) d. Greg Hirshman (STAN) 7-5, 7-5
5) Stephen Hoh (ILL) d. Richard Wire (STAN) 4-6, 7-5, 7-6 (7-3)
6) Denis Lin (STAN) d. Bruno Abdelnour (ILL) 2-6, 6-2, 6-1
Order of Finish: 6, 4, 3, 1, 2, 5

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