Men's tennis beats Cal, falls to Stanford on Senior Day

By Roman Veytsman
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Monday, April 12, 2004

Playing in front of a raucous crowd at the Robson Tennis Center, the No. 23 Arizona men's tennis team beat California 5-2 on Friday, but was unable to defeat No. 10 Stanford on Saturday, losing 6-1.

On a Senior Day filled with emotion, as senior captain Tom Lloyd and senior Whi Kim played in their final home matches, Stanford's talent overcame Arizona's effort and the largest crowd of the season.

"It was a big crowd," said Kim. "For the fans to be out there was great."

California came to Tucson fresh off an impressive upset of Stanford, but Arizona (13-8, 2-4 Pacific 10 Conference) was too much, winning five of six singles matches to beat the Bears for the second time this season.

In doubles play, the Bears took two out of three, with Kim and sophomore Daniel Andrus winning the only doubles match for the UA.

Sophomore Roger Matalonga continued his winning ways by upsetting Balazs Veress in straight sets, 6-3, 6-1. The only loss on the day came when junior Colin O'Grady fell in three sets to Tyler Browne. Seniors Kim and Lloyd both came away with wins, defeating Wayne Wong and Patrick Briaud, respectively. Junior Paul Warkentin and Andrus completed the win with straight-set victories.

"It's surreal," Lloyd said. "Beating (Cal) twice in the same year is pretty big. It shows that we're a team that's for real this year, and hopefully we can continue that success into the postseason."

The Stanford (14-7, 4-1 Pac-10) match wasn't as successful for Arizona, which fell behind early and couldn't rally.

Things didn't start off well for Arizona when Warkentin and Tim Mullane fell quickly 8-2 to James Wan and James Pade. On court two, Andrus and Kim couldn't defeat Phil Sheng and K.C. Corkery, losing 8-4. In what was by far the closest match, Matalonga and O'Grady went down 9-8 to Sam Warburg and Carter Morris. Neither team would give an inch and neither team was able to break serve. But in the tiebreak, Stanford converted a few key shots to gain the win.

The doubles wins gave Stanford the momentum going into singles play, in which Arizona managed only one win. Warkentin was able to defeat Chris Rasmussen on court six for the lone point.

"We had four matches going into three sets," said Lloyd. "It was pretty close."

The match was delayed for a short time because of rain when most of the matches were nearing the end of the first set.

"The rain delay stopped the momentum of some," Lloyd said.

Before the match, head coach Bill Wright honored Kim and Lloyd and thanked them for their years of dedication and effort. He also commemorated the end of Stanford head coach Dick Gould's career. Gould plans to retire at the end of the season.