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Men's Tennis Downs Pepperdine, 5-0 to Open ITA Kick-Off Weekend

Jan 23, 2015

LOS ANGELES - The UCLA men's tennis team won its ITA Kick-Off Weekend opener on Friday afternoon at the Los Angeles Tennis Center, dispatching of local rival Pepperdine, 5-0. The fourth-ranked Bruins now advance to Saturday's second-round match where they will take on Texas Tech at 3:00 p.m. The Red Raiders downed Boise State, 4-0 in Friday's earlier match.

UCLA's Joseph Di Giulio and Karue Sell paced the Bruins in doubles, posting a 6-0 win over Tom Hill and Rakshay Thakkar at court No. 2. That win was followed up by another solid victory at court No. 3, where Dennis Mkrtchian and Austin Rapp downed Pedro Iamachkine and Luca Marquard, 6-3.

With the doubles point locked up, the Bruins (2-0) came out and won first sets on five of six courts. First to finish was Redlicki at court No. 3, as he overpowered Iamachkine, 6-3, 6-2 to give UCLA a 2-0 lead. UCLA then moved within a win of clinching the match when Di Giulio dispatched of Marquard, 6-2, 6-0.

The Bruins would win the next two matches within seconds of each other, which resulted in the 5-0 win. First to finish was Sell at court No. 4, as he downed Lautaro Pane, 6-4, 6-4. Meanwhile at court No. 2, Mkrtchian was already up a set and leading 5-2 in a second-set tiebreaker with Thakkar. Mkrtchian hit a shot close to the sideline that was called out by Thakkar, however the umpire overruled the call, giving Mkrtchian a 6-2 advantage. Because it was the third overrule for Thakkar, he was given a point penalty that resulted in Mkrtchian going up 7-2 to take the tiebreaker and the match 6-3, 7-6(2).

The winner of Saturday's UCLA-Texas Tech showdown will earn a spot in next month's USTA/ITA National Team Indoors in Chicago. A consolation match between Pepperdine and Boise State is scheduled for Saturday at 6:00 p.m.

2015 ITA KICK-OFF WEEKEND
#4 UCLA 5, #53 Pepperdine 0
Jan 23, 2015 at Los Angeles, CA (Los Angeles Tennis Center)

Doubles
1. #11 McDonald/Redlicki (UCLA) vs. Hadlich/Pane (PEP) 5-3, unfinished
2. Di Giulio/Sell (UCLA) def. Hill/Thakkar (PEP) 6-0
3. Mkrtchian/Rapp (UCLA) def. Iamachkine/Marquard (PEP) 6-3

UCLA Wins Doubles Point

Singles
1. #7 Mackenzie McDonald (UCLA) vs. Guilherme Hadlich (PEP) 7-6(8), 2-2, unfinished
2. Dennis Mkrtchian (UCLA) def. Rakshay Thakkar (PEP) 6-3, 7-6(2)
3. #88 Martin Redlicki (UCLA) def. Pedro Iamachkine (PEP) 6-3, 6-1
4. Karue Sell (UCLA) def. Lautaro Pane (PEP) 6-4, 6-4
5. Joseph Di Giulio (UCLA) def. Luca Marquard (PEP) 6-2, 6-0
6. #90 Austin Rapp (UCLA) vs. Tom Hill (PEP) 4-6, 6-3, unfinished
Match Notes
Pepperdine 0-1; National ranking #53
UCLA 2-0; National ranking #4
Order of finish: Doubles (2,3); Singles (3,5,4,2)