No. 1 USC Finds Vengeance In 4-1 Win Over Ohio State At ITA National Indoors|
Feb. 14, 2015
CHICAGO, ILL. -- The top-ranked USC men's tennis team exacted some revenge today in a 4-1 takedown of No. 8 Ohio State in the quarterfinals of the ITA National Team Indoor Championships in Chicago. A rematch of last year's tournament title match, this time the Trojans turned the tables on the Buckeyes. The USC victory propels the Trojans into the semifinals as they seek to make a fourth consecutive trip to the final. Now 8-0, USC will go up against either Georgia or Illinois in tomorrow's 3:30 p.m. CT semifinal bout.
For the second day running, it was USC seniors Yannick Hanfmann, Eric Johnson and Roberto Quiroz who drummed up singles wins to notch victory for the Trojans. USC once again got a leg up in doubles play, as Max de Vroome and Johnson teamed up for a 6-2 win on court two to get the Trojans in a groove. Senior power couple Hanfmann/Quiroz -- the nation's top-ranked pair -- pinned up a 6-4 win at the No. 1 spot over Ohio State's #7 Steinbach/Metka, and the Trojans were on the board with a 1-0 lead.
"We played a great doubles point," USC head coach Peter Smith said. "I felt like we got off to a great start. Ohio State pushed us and we responded. It was really good to see us be pushed and respond."
In singles action, Ohio State fired back when Herkko Pollanen managed a 6-3, 6-2 win on court three over USC's Jonny Wang. Now locked up at 1-1, the Trojans were undaunted and quickly found their winning touch. Eric Johnson was the first to impress. He'd deliver a 7-5, 6-4 upset win from his No. 4 spot over Ohio State's #68 Ralf Steinbach to nudge the Trojans ahead 2-1. Next up was #24 Roberto Quiroz, who pounced on a 6-1, 7-5 win over #30 Mikal Torpegaard on court two to lift USC ahead 3-1. And for the second straight match, it was #7 senior Yannick Hanfmann who had the clincher. He'd follow up a first-set tiebreak with a dominating second set to beat out #53 Chris Diaz 7-6 (4), 6-1 and bring home the 4-1 victory for the Trojans over the Buckeyes.
"I love those guys," Smith said of his seniors, who stepped up to get the three key singles wins today. "I get goosebumps talking about them. We've been through a lot of wars together. They understand what's necessary to do out there and they really came through."
ITA NATIONAL TEAM INDOOR CHAMPIONSHIPS (Chicago, Ill.)