Feb. 20, 2010
STANFORD, Calif. - The No. 27-ranked California men's tennis team (7-1) shocked rival No. 8 Stanford (7-2) in a come-from-behind 4-3 victory on Saturday, Feb. 20, at the Taube Family Tennis Stadium in Stanford, Calif. Down, 3-1, the Golden Bears won three straight singles matches and snapped a four-match losing streak to the Cardinal as No. 111-ranked freshman Christoffer Konigsfeldt completed his three-set victory over No. 34 Alex Clayton at the second singles court.
Konigsfeldt surrendered a hard-fought 7-6 set to Clayton in the first but stiffened up to get a 6-4 win in the second before he found himself in a heated three-all third set. Konigsfeldt broke the Stanford serve to go up, 5-3, but Clayton responded to break the Cal serve and pulled within one game at 5-4. Serving in the 10th game, Clayton fell behind the count, 40-30, as he sent a ball into the net. Konigsfeldt stepped into the next Clayton serve to force his Stanford counterpart to miss his shot and seal the win for the Bears.
The Cardinal claimed the doubles point as it won at the top court, 8-4. The No. 2-ranked duo of Bradley Klahn and Ryan Thacher were deadlocked in a four-all tie with No. 33 junior Jonathan Dahan and Pedro Zerbini before Stanford came away with the final four games. Earlier, Stanford got an 8-4 win at the third court as Matt Kandath and Denis Lin defeated junior Bozhidar Katsarov and freshman Riki McLachlan. Konigsfeldt and sophomore Nick Andrews christened their newly bestowed No. 22 ranking by defeating No. 26 Clayton and Richard Wire, 8-6 at the second court.
The Cardinal won the first singles match and went up, 2-0, as Thacher took a 6-3, 6-0 win over No. 78 Dahan at the third court. Cal got on the board as Andrews completed his 6-3, 6-4 win against Wire at No. 4 singles. But Stanford responded and took a 3-1 lead in the match when Greg Hirshman ended McLachlan's six-match singles winning streak with a 6-3, 6-3 win on court six.
Facing the 3-1 deficit, the Bears never gave in as No. 31 Zerbini bounced back from dropping his first set to No. 18 Klahn at the top court to earn a three-set victory in a third-set tiebreaker. Klahn won the first, 6-2, before Zerbini fought back for a 6-4 win in the second. Then Zerbini held serve in the 12th game of the third to force the tiebreaker. In it, he went up 3-0, and then 4-1 before Klahn stormed back to knot the score at four-all. Zerbini then went cross-court for his final lead. Klahn's shot went wide of the sideline to give Zerbini match point before a Cal volley secured the 7-4 win in the tiebreaker to give Cal its second point of the match.
At court five, Katsarov dropped his first set, 6-4, to Kandath, before he got on track to take a 6-2 win in the second. Katsarov held serve to go up, 6-5, in the third, but Kandath stood fast to force a tiebreaker. With the score tied at three in the breaker, Katsarov ripped off three consecutive points before Kandath sent a shot into the net to give Katsarov the 7-4 win, and set up a three-all tie in the team score.
Cal will host a pair of Pac-10 foes next weekend as USC and UCLA visit the Hellman Tennis Complex. The outcome of neither match will count towards Pac-10 standings as they are each the first of two scheduled matches this season. The Trojans are up first as Cal and USC lock up in a 1:30 p.m. PT match on Friday, Feb. 26. The Bruins and Bears will hit the courts at 1 p.m. PT on Saturday, Feb. 27. Please check CalBears.com for more information.
No. 27 California 4, No. 8 Stanford 3