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No. 23 Bruins Sweep UC Irvine, 7-0

Mar 23, 2021

LOS ANGELES - One day after posting an emotional 4-3 victory over Pac-12 rival Stanford, the No. 23 UCLA men's tennis team put in a dominating performance against UC Irvine at the Los Angeles Tennis Center on Tuesday afternoon, downing the Anteaters, 7-0 in a non-conference showdown. With the win, the Bruins move to 7-2 on the season, while UC Irvine sees its record fall to 4-4.

The Bruins opened up Tuesday's match with a pair of doubles wins to take a 1-0 lead. After Bryce Pereira and Keegan Smith posted a 6-2 win at the top position, UCLA clinched the doubles point at court No. 3, where Ben Goldberg and Connor Rapp downed UCI's Jeremy Merville and Matthew Sah, 6-4.

UCLA's domination continued into singles play, with the Bruins winning first sets on all six courts. UCLA would soon notch its second point of the afternoon when Nanda, playing in just his second match of the season for the Bruins, downed Bjorn Hoffmann, 6-2, 6-3 at court No. 1.

Next to finish for the Bruins was court No. 4, as Goldberg dropped just two games en route to a 6-0, 6-2 win over Sah to make it 3-0 in favor of UCLA.

The clinching point would come next door at court No. 5, as Mathew Tsolakyan was a 6-2, 6-2 winner over Thomas Smart.

Unlike doubles action where play was suspended once the point was decided, both teams opted to play out all singles matches, giving the Bruins three more chances at victories. Both Roscoe Bellamy and Drew Baird would post straight-set victories at court Nos. 6 and 3, respectively to give UCLA a 6-0 lead.

UC Irvine's best chance to get on the board came at court No. 2, where Merville was able to grab the second set over Smith and actually move out to a 5-3 lead in the third set. Smith, however, hung strong, winning the final four games of the match to take a 6-2, 3-6, 7-5 victory to complete the shutout for the Bruins.

Next up for UCLA is a showdown with Arizona State this Friday in Tempe, Ariz. beginning at 2:00 p.m.

Tennis Match Results
UC Irvine vs UCLA
3/23/2021 at Los Angeles, CA
(Los Angeles Tennis Center)

#23 UCLA 7, UC Irvine 0

Singles competition
1. #22 Govind Nanda (UCLA) def. Bjorn Hoffmann (UCI) 6-2, 6-3
2. #10 Keegan Smith (UCLA) def. Jeremy Merville (UCI) 6-3, 3-6, 7-5
3. Drew Baird (UCLA) def. Mark Peneff (UCI) 6-1, 7-6 (8-6)
4. Ben Goldberg (UCLA) def. Matthew Sah (UCI) 6-0, 6-2
5. Mathew Tsolakyan (UCLA) def. Thomas Smart (UCI) 6-2, 6-2
6. Roscoe Bellamy (UCLA) def. Ali Amiri (UCI) 6-3, 6-4

Doubles competition
1. Bryce Pereira/Keegan Smith (UCLA) def. Bjorn Hoffmann/Mateusz Smolicki (UCI) 6-2
2. Drew Baird/Govind Nanda (UCLA) vs. Bruce Man-Son-Hing/Mark Peneff (UCI) 4-4, unfinished
3. Ben Goldberg/Connor Rapp (UCLA) def. Jeremy Merville/Matthew Sah (UCI) 6-4

Match Notes:
UC Irvine 4-4
UCLA 7-2; National ranking #23
Order of finish: Doubles (1,3); Singles (1,4,5,6,3,2)