Huskies Get Pac-12 Opening Road Win Over Ducks
EUGENE, Ore. – Washington men's tennis earned its tenth win of the season, and best win to date, as the Huskies ventured to Eugene and held off 52nd-ranked Oregon, 4-2, at the Student Tennis Center. No. 1-ranked Clement Chidekh clinched the victory for the Huskies in the Pac-12 opener for both teams, rallying from a set down to beat 81st-ranked Joshua Charlton in the top singles spot.
The win was extra gratifying as UW got the win in spite of missing 66th-ranked No. 2 singles player Ewen Lumsden today.
"We're thrilled with the win," said Head Coach Matt Anger. "We had some guys who weren't feeling their best and I'm most impressed with the concentration to keep playing and keep giving their best effort. Han-Chih (Lin) getting a win in the doubles for us, he came in to pair up with Cesar and they had not played together and that helped us get the doubles win. From there, Jack Davis did a good job and Han-Chih got another point. We had a lot of options. Clement getting the clincher felt good for a lot of reasons. Really proud of him."
Chidekh said he wasn't feeling one-hundred percent but he "tried to survive and play point by point, trying to focus. Really happy to be the guy and really proud of all the guys. Han-Chih and Jack were unbelievable today. Coming back in doubles with Nedim was super important too. It's a special match always against Oregon."
After the Huskies grabbed a dramatic doubles point, senior Jack Davis moved up to the No. 2 singles spot and quickly put the first singles point on the board with a 6-0, 6-4 win over Quinn Vandecasteele. Then sophomore Han-Chih Lin delivered a big ranked win, beating No. 124 Jesper Klov-Nilsson, 7-5, 6-1, at third singles.
Oregon, however, had won four of the six first sets in singles, so the Dawgs would need to turn around at least one. Chidekh, Nedim Suko, and Jack Pulliam all were able to win their second sets after losing the first, to give UW several options to chase the fourth point.
Suko wound up just short in his No. 5 match with Luke Vandecasteele, falling 6-2, 3-6, 6-4, to make it 3-2 Huskies. Pulliam came back from a 6-0 first set loss at No. 6 singles to Ryoma Matsushita to win set two, 7-5, and he jumped out to a 3-0 third set lead, but Matsushita closed to within 4-3.
But before Pulliam's match could end, Chidekh asserted himself in the No. 1 match. Down 4-6, 3-4, against Charlton, Chidekh won the final three games of set two to force a third. He took his first lead at 3-2 in the third set and then broke for a 5-2 lead, and closed it out one game later for the 4-6, 6-4, 6-2 win. Chidekh improved to 18-3 on the season and 7-0 in dual play.
In doubles play, UW got a quick 6-1 win at third doubles from Cesar Bouchelaghem and Han-Chih Lin, teaming together for the first time with Lumsden out. Oregon's 16th-ranked duo of Charlton/Q. Vandecasteele defeated Davis and Brandon Wong, 6-3, at No. 1. With the point on the line, 36th-ranked Chidekh and Suko fought back from 1-4 and 2-5 deficits to force a tiebreak at No. 2 against Kadiri/Keremedchiev, and they took the breaker, 7-5, for the point.
Washington and Oregon will have a rematch in Seattle on Apr. 6, though it will be a non-conference match. The Huskies will now play at the USD Invitational in San Diego next week, which also features Penn, New Mexico, and the host San Diego in dual match play. Match-ups will be determined early next week.
Washington Men's Tennis
March 5, 2022
Student Tennis Center | Eugene, Ore.
#67 Washington – 4
#52 Oregon – 2
1. (#1) Clement Chidekh (UW) def. (#81) Joshua Charlton (Ore) – 4-6, 6-4, 6-2
2. Jack Davis (UW) def. Quinn Vandecasteele (Ore) – 6-0, 6-4
3. Han-Chih Lin (UW) def. (#124) Jesper Klov-Nilsson (Ore) – 7-5, 6-1
4. Ivailo Keremedchiev (Ore) def. Cesar Bouchelaghem (UW) – 6-1, 7-5
5. Luke Vandecasteele (Ore) def. Nedim Suko (UW) – 6-2, 3-6, 6-4
6. Jack Pulliam (UW) vs. Ryoma Matsushita (Ore) – 0-6, 7-5, 4-3, DNF
Order of Finish: 2, 4, 3, 5, 1
1. (#16) Charlton/Q. Vandecasteele (Ore) def. Davis/Wong (UW) – 6-3
2. (#36) Chidekh/Suko (UW) def. Kadiri/Keremedchiev (Ore) – 7-6 (5)
3. Bouchelaghem/Lin (UW) def. Klov-Nilsson/L. Vandecasteele (Ore) – 6-1
Order of Finish: 3, 1, 2