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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


No. 10 Arizona men’s tennis ends regular season defeating Washington and No. 57 Oregon

Wildcats secure third consecutive Pac-12 Regular Season Co-Championship
Jay Corella
Sasha Rozin and Gustaf Strom return the ball from an ASU pair during the doubles stage of their game on April 7 at Robson Tennis Center. The Pair defeated their ASU counterparts with a score of 6-2.

The No. 10 Arizona men’s tennis team began its week in Seattle, where the Wildcats faced off against the University of Washington on Friday, April 19, at 5 p.m. at Bill Quillian Tennis Stadium. Arizona would then travel to Eugene, Ore., to face the No. 57 University of Oregon on Sunday, April 21, at noon at Oregon Student Tennis Center. The Wildcats entered these matches coming off back-to-back victories against the No. 21 ASU and the University of Utah the week prior. Arizona would only continue its excellent play and close out another weekend with back-to-back victories, closing out its regular season by winning four straight matches.

Arizona (21-3, 7-1 in Pac-12) swept Washington (8-14, 2-6 in Pac-12) Friday evening 4-0 to reach its eighth sweep of the season. The Wildcats closed out the weekend facing Oregon (14-12, 3-5 in Pac-12), defeating the Ducks 4-1 to finish their regular season as the Pac-12 Regular Season Co-Champions for the third straight season, sharing the championship with No. 20 Stanford University.

Day 1: No. 10 Arizona vs. Washington – Friday, April 19, 5 p.m. 

Arizona started its week of play with a resounding victory over Washington, sweeping the Huskies with a commanding 4-0 win on Friday. The Wildcats were masterful in both their doubles and singles matches, leaving the Huskies with no answers for Arizona.

In the two doubles matches, Arizona had the clear advantage from the first batted ball till the final blown whistle. No. 29 Colton Smith and Jay Friend played on court and secured a decisive 6-3 victory against Dzianis Zharyn and Brett Pearson from Washington, while Herman Hoeyeraal and Eric Padgham followed suit on court two, fending off Cesar Bouchelaghem and Han-Chih Lin to secure a 6-4 win for the Wildcats and take the doubles point for Arizona.

To close out the day were the singles matches, and Arizona did not let up in any of them, clinching five of six first singles sets. No. 20 Smith led the way with his 6-3, 7-5 win over Bouchelaghem on court one. Senior Nick Lagaev added to the Wildcats’ momentum against the Huskies with a solid 6-4, 6-4 victory against Jim Hendrikx on court six. Casper Christensen ultimately sealed the victory for the Wildcats on court five with a 6-3, 7-6 (11- 9) win over Ivan Sodan.

After another stellar day of play, the Wildcats turned their full attention toward Oregon, whom they would be facing in their regular season finale before heading into postseason play.

Day 2: No. 10 Arizona vs. No. 57 Oregon – Sunday, April 21, noon

On Sunday, Arizona secured its share of the Pac-12 Regular Season Championship for the third consecutive season with a 4-1 victory over Oregon.

Despite Oregon gaining an early advantage by securing the doubles point, Arizona responded strongly. Hoeyeraal and Padgham’s 6-2 win on court two against Ray Lo and Lenn Luemkemann helped Arizona regain momentum. The crucial point swung in Oregon’s favor on court three, where Vlad Breazu and Avi Shugar clinched the point with a 6-3 victory over Sasha Rozin and Gustaf Strom.

However, Arizona turned the tide of the match with dominant singles play, winning all six first sets. Christensen set the tone with his impressive 6-1, 6-1 victory over Luemkemann. Lagaev continued the momentum with a 6-4, 6-1 win against Lo on court six. Smith extended Arizona’s lead with a 6-2, 7-6 (7-1) win over No. 83 Quinn Vandecasteele on court one. After a slow start to the day, the Wildcats rallied, and Hoeyeraal sealed the victory for Arizona with a 7-6 (7-2), 6-4 win over No. 46 Matthew Burton and secured the team win.

Looking ahead: 

The Wildcats locked up the No. 2 seed for the Pac-12 Tennis Championships and will be heading to Ojai, Calif., to face its first-round opponent, the No. 7 seed USC, on Thursday, April 25 at 3 p.m. at Libbey Park.

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