Bruins Down Florida, 4-1 to Advance to NCAA Semifinals
May 18, 2003
Athens, Ga. - UCLA's Tobias Clemens came from a set down to win in three sets Sunday, clinching a 4-1 victory for sixth-seeded UCLA over No. 3 Florida in the quarterfinals of the NCAA Men's Tennis Championships at the University of Georgia's Dan Magill Tennis Complex. UCLA (24-3) now advances to Monday's semifinals and will take on seventh-seeded Vanderbilt (26-3) at Noon (EST). The Commodores upset No. 2 Baylor, 4-0 on Sunday.
UCLA claimed the doubles point with victories on the top two courts. Florida took the first match, with an 8-4 decision at the No. 3 position. The Bruins answered back with an 8-2 victory at the No. 2 spot. UCLA clinched the doubles point at the No. 1 position, where 24th-ranked Rodrigo Grilli and Marcin Matkowski posted an 8-4 win over 16th-ranked Hamid Mirzadeh/Chris McDonald.
In singles play, Florida quickly tied the match at 1-1 when Troy Hahn defeated UCLA's Rodrigo Grilli, 6-2, 6-2 at the No. 3 spot. Bruin senior Erfan Djahangiri put UCLA ahead 2-1 following his 6-1, 7-5 victory over Matt Behrmann at the No. 5 position.
Just a few minutes later, UCLA's Chris Lam, who clinched the match against Oklahoma State on Saturday, defeated Olivier Levant, 6-4, 6-4 at the No. 4 spot.
With UCLA ahead 3-1, all three remaining matches then moved to a third set. Clemens was up 5-3, Matkowski was down 5-3 and Lassi Ketola was deadlocked at 3-3 when rain forced play indoors.
Play indoors lasted just two minutes, as Clemens served out his match to defeat Mirzadeh, 3-6, 7-5, 6-3. Clemens, who has not lost a match since March 5, pushed his winning streak to 13 in a row. Sunday also marked the first time he has dropped a set in 13 matches.
With the victory, the Bruins avenge a 4-1 loss to the Gators back on Feb. 22 at the USTA/ITA National Team Indoors. It also marks the second year in a row that UCLA ends Florida's season, as the Bruins defeated the Gators in the NCAA Round of 16 in 2002.
UCLA Head Coach Billy Martin
No. 1 Singles Tobias Clemens
Florida Head Coach Andy Jackson
Florida No. 1 Singles Hamid Mirzadeh
CLick for Bruin Video