No. 9 Trojan Men Beat The Bruins 4-2 In Westwood|
April 16, 2015
LOS ANGELES - The No. 9 ranked USC men's tennis team traveled across town to take on rivals UCLA where it defeated the Bruins 4-2 at Los Angeles Tennis Center. This match put the finishing touches on the regular season. The Trojans have secured a piece of the Pac-12 title, standing as co-champions with Stanford with a 6-1 finish. USC takes the No. 2 seed for a semifinal spot in the coming Pac-12 Tournament and are now 20-4 overall.
The Bruins came out strong in defense of their home court. Bruin duo Mkrtchian/Rapp snagged the first win of the day as they defeated USC's Crystal/Wang 6-1. After being down 5-1 to UCLA's Di Giulio/Sell, USC's pair of de Vroome/Johnson fought back to win two games to make the score 5-3. However, the Bruins took the final game and won 6-3 to claim the doubles point.
Even though USC was entering the singles portion of the competition with a 1-0 deficit, the Trojans were not shaken. Rackets ablaze, the Trojans took to the court and immediately made a strong showing. On court two, Eric Johnson took set one 6-3 over UCLA's #32 Dennis Mkrtchian. Johnson took control of the second set by defeating Mkrtchian with a decisive 6-1 score.
With the Trojans and the Bruins tied at 1-1, #81 Max de Vroome dominated court five. He took the first set 6-3 over UCLA's Austin Rapp. After grinding his opponent back and fourth across the court, Rapp swung out and de Vroome won the second set 6-1 to give the Trojans their second win of the day.
USC was now taking charge of this match. Court five was next to finish with #25 Roberto Quiroz beating #32 Dennis Mkrtchian 6-4, 6-1 with a loud battle cry. Quiroz's win put the Trojans ahead 3-1 in the match.
On court one, USC's #12 Yannick Hanfmann was battling it out with UCLA's #3 Mackenzie McDonald. Impressive volleys and powerful shots were made on both sides of the net, but McDonald came out on top finishing with 6-3, 6-3 to give the Trojans their first singles loss of the day.
With the action in the main stadium completed, the crowd moved over to watch the remaining contests on courts four and six. After winning the first set 6-3 on court six, USC's #90 Nick Crystal was battling it out with UCLA's Joseph Di Giulio for the match. Di Guilio was clawing for a comeback, but with a perfectly placed shot from Crystal, the Trojan won the second set 6-3, clinching the match for the Trojans.
The next action for the Trojans will be the Pac-12 Championships in Ojai, Calif. A regular-season co-champion, USC will be the No. 2 seed in the draw, secured with a spot in the 3 p.m. semifinals on April 24 at Libbey Park.
#9 USC 4, #19 UCLA 2