Jan. 30, 2007
Berkeley, Cali.f - The Santa Clara men's tennis started strongly against No. 18 California on Tuesday afternoon in Berkeley, but could not keep up the pace before falling 6-1. In doubles, Jan Macek and Bobby Rasmussen won their match, while both Blane Shields and Kevin McQuaid and Brian Brogan and Robert Gallman came up just short, losing in tiebreaks after having the chance to serve for the match. In singles, Rasmussen won his match and Macek nearly pulled off an upset of No. 19 Pierre Mouillon.
In No. 1 doubles, the team of McQuaid/Shields had a 7-4 edge in the match and hoped to serve out the match at 7-5, but Cal's John Petit and Tyler Browne responded by winning four straight games to take the match 9-7. Macek and Rasmussen continued their fine play at No. 2, pulling out a tough 9-8 (6) match against Geoff Chizever and Eoin Heavey. The final match, which decided the doubles point, was an instant classic with the match going back and forth. Brogan and Gallman got up 6-2 and 7-4 over Kalim Stewart and Ken Nakahara, but could not close out the match. Cal forced a tiebreaker, during which each team saved a match point before Cal pulled out the breaker 9-7 and the match 9-8 (7).
"We were definitely ready to go and got off to great starts on all three courts," said Husack. "The energy was there and so too were the opportunities. However, we got tight and just could not pull it out. It wasn't as if we could go to the bullpen and bring in Goose Gossage or Pete Sampras. The guys need this experience and one day the pressure to close out the match against a top-20 team will become second nature."
Losing the doubles point seemed to affect the Broncos in singles as Cal won the first set in three matches 6-0 and one set 6-1 to take command. However, Macek and Rasmussen were inspired by their doubles win and played solid tennis. Macek got up 6-4, 4-1 on No. 19 Mouillon, but could not hold on, losing in a third set super tiebreaker 10-7. Rasmussen earned a straight sets win over Kalim Stewart at No. 5 sinlges 6-4, 6-4. Stewart was No. 1 in the nation for Boys 18s a year ago. Brogan, Jay Wong, Gallman and Tommy Hicks could not get back in their matches and lost in straight sets.
"I think it was clear that some of the guys still had the doubles point on their mind when they started singles," said Husack. "Jay and Tommy also seemed a little tight because they wanted to reverse things quickly. Cal came out pretty loose and swinging from the heels so they got up big on us. Most of the team responded in the second set though and played some good tennis, but we could not get back into it."
The Broncos return to the court this weekend taking on the defending national champion Pepperdine Waves on Saturday, Feb. 3 at 2:00 p.m. in Malibu before traveling to Irvine to play the UC Irvine Anteaters on Sunday, Feb. 4 at 1:00 p.m. PT.
"This match today was a tough one to experience mentally, especially after an emotional ride against Boise State on Sunday," said Husack. "It will, however, be great to look back at this match later in the season and see how we've improved. We are a good team and getting more experienced with each match against very good competition. We'll be ready this weekend as we face defending national champion and WCC foe Pepperdine as well as the new look Anteaters of UC Irvine."
Singles Results: (order of finish: 6, 3, 4, 5, 2, 1)
1. Cal No. 19 Pierre Mouillon def. SCU Jan Macek 4-6, 7-5, 1-0 (7)
2. Cal Tyler Browne def, SCU Brian Brogan 6-0 6-4
3. Cal Ken Nakahara def. SCU Jay Wong 6-1 6-0
4. Cal Eoin Heavey def. SCU Robert Gallman 6-0 6-4
5. SCU Bobby Rasmussen def. Cal Kalim Stewart 6-4, 6-4
6. Cal Geoff Chizever def. SCU Tommy Hicks 6-0, 6-3
Doubles Results: (order of finish 1, 2, 3)
1. Cal John Petit/Tyler Browne def. SCU Kevin McQuaid/Blane Shields 9-7
2. SCU Jan Macek/Bobby Rasmussen def. Cal Geoff Chizever/Eoin Heavey 9-8 (6)
3. Cal Kalim Stewart/Ken Nakahara def. SCU Brian Brogan/Robert Gallman 9-8 (7)