March 10, 2004
LOS ANGELES - The No. 8-ranked UCLA men's tennis team dropped a close 4-3 decision to No. 10 Duke Wednesday in a non-conference men's tennis showdown at the Los Angeles Tennis Center. The Bruins fall to 9-5 with the loss, while Duke improves to 10-4 overall.
UCLA actually owned a 2-0 lead in the dual match after winning the doubles point and then claiming the first singles point of the day at the No. 1 position. In that match, sixth-ranked Tobias Clemens posted an impressive 6-2, 6-2 decision over 11th-ranked Phillip King.
The Blue Devils answered right back however, as seventh-ranked Ludovic Walter defeated No. 52 Chris Lam, 6-3, 6-2 at the No. 2 position. Lam, who was not at full strength Wednesday as he was suffering from flu-like symptoms that kept him out of doubles action, tried to give it a go in singles play but was not one-hundred percent.
Duke then tied the match at 2-2 when Peter Rodrigues posted a 6-2, 6-4 decision over No. 95 Alberto Francis at the No. 3 spot. Court No. 4 was next to finish, where Duke's Jonathan Stokke defeated 36th-ranked Kris Kwinta, 6-3, 6-4 to give the Blue Devils a 3-2 advantage.
UCLA would tie the match once again when Bruin sophomore Chris Surapol defeated Christopher Brown, 6-3, 6-4 at the No. 6 position.
With the dual match tied at 3-3, the focus then turned to court No. 5, where UCLA's Philipp Gruendler and Duke's Jason Zimmerman were in a third set. Zimmerman clinched the match for Duke, posting a 6-2, 1-6, 6-3 victory over the 86th-ranked Gruendler.
Wednesday's match was the first of a six-match homestand for UCLA, which returns to the LATC this Friday to host No. 25 Arizona at 1:30 p.m.