May 12, 2012
BERKELEY - The 14th-ranked California men's tennis team (13-11) earned a 4-0 win against UTSA (13-11) in the first round of the 2012 NCAA Division I Men's Tennis Championships at the Hellman Tennis Complex on Saturday, May 12. The Golden Bears advance to face No. 22 Texas Tech (16-8) in a 1 p.m. PT second-round match on Sunday, May 13. This is the third consecutive time that Cal has won its first-round match. Last year, the Bears moved into the round of 16.
"We got off to a good start in doubles," said head coach Peter Wright. "It's good to be at home. It's our first home match in a little while; since the Pac-12 championships. I felt good about how we played doubles and singles. It's a good day to be a Golden Bear, with graduation in the background, but even with all the distractions, I felt our guys stayed on task and played a good match, today."
The Bears started strong, but the Roadrunners kept pace, on serve, through the first five games on each doubles court. At No. 3 doubles, freshmen Gregory Bayane and Andrew Scholnick pulled away, first, as they extended to a 6-2 lead. Two games later, the Cal duo completed an 8-2 win over Kolby Kilgo and Joel Rubio to give the Bears a leg up in the race for the doubles point.
At the top two doubles courts, Cal's teams each produced 7-4 leads. Its sixth-ranked team of senior Nick Andrews and junior Christoffer Konigsfeldt led Yannick Junger and Pedro Zanotelli at the top court while sophomore Ben McLachlan and freshman Chase Melton were up on Martin Ayala and Tyler Brown at No. 2.
Both courts hit deuce point at the same time and the Bear tandems each earned the advantage simultaneously. In a side-by-side rally for the final point, McLachlan and Melton won the race as they forced a Roadrunner shot to go long for an 8-4 win to deliver the first point of the dual to Cal's side of the scoreboard.
Cal claimed first-set wins on all six singles courts. Down, 5-4, on court three, Konigsfeldt won three straight games to finish with a 7-5 win over Ayala. At the top court, 37th-ranked Ben McLachlan had a 6-0 win over Junger and was sandwiched at the bottom of the lineup by Melton's 6-0 win over Moser.
At No. 4 singles, Bayane tacked up Cal's first singles point with a 6-1, 6-1 win over Rubio to give the Bears a 2-0 lead in the dual. With Moser on the ropes, Melton came through with a 6-0, 6-2 victory at court six to give Cal a commanding 3-0 lead in the match.
With the clinching point hanging in the balance, the Bears completed the 4-0 win when 37th-ranked Ben McLachlan earned a 6-0, 6-4 win against Junger at the top court. It was McLachlan's team-high 25th singles victory of the year and the fourth time that he has provided the clinching point in a dual, this spring.
In the day's early match, No. 22 Texas Tech earned a 4-1 victory over No. 63 Cal Poly (15-8) to advance to the second round. The Red Raiders needed four singles wins to come back after they dropped the doubles point. Vitor Manzini came up with the three-set clincher when he took out Jordan Bridge, 6-2, 3-6, 6-4, at No. 4 singles. The last time the Bears and the Raiders faced each other, Texas Tech claimed a 4-1 win in Lubbock, Texas, on Jan. 30, 2011, during the ITA Kick-Off Weekend. Prior to that, Cal won, 4-0, in the only other meeting against the Raiders.
Cal and Texas Tech face each other in the second round of the NCAA championships in a 1 p.m. PT match on Sunday, May 13. The winner will advance to the round of 16 at the Dan Magill Tennis Complex in Athens, Ga., on the campus of host University of Georgia. Please visit NCAA.com for more information.
No. 14 California 4, UTSA 0
No. 22 Texas Tech 4, No. 63 Cal Poly 1