OJAI, Calif. - Fourth-seeded and 19th-ranked California ended its run in the Pac-12 Championships on Friday with a 4-1 semifinal loss to top-seeded and top-ranked USC at Libbey Park. Freshman Andre Goransson posted the Golden Bears’ point with his win at court-four singles. The Bears’ record now stands at 15-7, while the Trojans, who will play in Saturday’s final, improved to 26-2.
The Cal pair of freshman Filip Bergevi and sophomore Mads Engsted fell to Max de Vroome/Eric Johnson, 8-2, on court three to open doubles. The doubles point was still up for grabs as the teams played tight matches on courts one and two. On court one, Cal’s 23rd-ranked team of juniors Gregory Bayane and Chase Melton trailed the top-ranked team of Ray Sarmiento/Yannick Hanfmann, 7-6. But the Trojans’ Nick Crystal/Roberto Quiroz clinched the doubles point on a tiebreaker on court two, beating Cal’s 85th-ranked tandem of senior Ben McLachlan and freshman Andre Goransson, 8-7(2).
“The doubles point was a big key for us today,” Cal head coach Peter Wright said. “We had some opportunities to take the doubles point, and we played well in doubles on courts one and two.”
In singles, Cal freshman Filip Bergevi lost to No. 43 Roberto Quiroz on court three, 6-2, 6-2, to give USC a 2-0 lead in the overall match. McLachlan, ranked 61st, fell to the 13th-ranked Hanfmann, 6-2, 7-5, on court one to make the score 3-0.
Goransson followed with a 7-6(5), 6-2 victory over the 85th-ranked Max de Vroome on court four, and Cal trailed 3-1. On court five, Bayane won the first set over Johnson to give the Bears some hope, but the Trojan prevailed, 1-6, 6-2, 6-1, to clinch the match for USC at 4-1.
“In the singles we turned in some pretty solid performances as well,” Wright said. “Campbell Johnson was in a tight match, and Andre Goransson won his match. Ben McLachlan lost the first set but came back and made it close in the second set. We had some high-quality tennis today. Overall we played well and we created some opportunities to put ourselves in a good position. Overall, with that match being the last match heading into NCAAs, I feel good at where we are heading into NCAAs.”
Cal now awaits the April 29 announcement of the field for the NCAA team tournament.
No. 1/Top Seed USC (26-2) def. No. 19/4th Seed Cal (15-7) – 4-1
April 25, 2014, in Ojai, Calif.
1: No. 1 Ray Sarmiento/Yannick Hanfmann (USC) vs. No. 23 Gregory Bayane/Chase Melton (Cal) – 7-6 Abandoned
2: Nick Crystal/Roberto Quiroz (USC) def. No. 85 Andre Goransson/Ben McLachlan (Cal) – 8-7(2)
3: Max de Vroome/Eric Johnson (USC) def. Filip Bergevi/Mads Engsted (Cal) – 8-2
USC captured the doubles point.
Order of Finish: 3, 2*.
1: No. 13 Yannick Hanfmann (USC) def. No. 61 Ben McLachlan (Cal) – 6-2, 7-5
2: No. 10 Ray Sarmiento (USC) vs. Campbell Johnson (Cal) – 6-4, 6-6 Unfinished
3: No. 43 Roberto Quiroz (USC) def. Filip Bergevi (Cal) – 6-2, 6-2
4: Andre Goransson (Cal) def. No. 85 Max de Vroome (USC) – 7-6(5), 6-2
5: Eric Johnson (USC) def. Gregory Bayane (Cal) – 1-6, 6-2, 6-1
6: No. 119 Michael Grant (USC) vs. Nikhil Jayashankar (Cal) – 6-4, 5-1 Unfinished
Order of Finish: 3, 1, 4, 5^.
^Clinched the overall match