MENâ€™S TENNIS DROPS HEARTBREAKER AT CAL POLY, 4-3
SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. -- With the match tied at 3-3, Cal Poly’s Andrew Gerst overcame a 5-0 third-set deficit to defeat Sacramento State’s Anton Stryhas and give the Mustangs a 4-3 victory over the Hornets in a non-conference men’s tennis match Saturday afternoon.
With the contest boiling down to the No. 2 singles matchup between Gerst and Stryhas, Gerst trailed 5-0 in the third set, but battled back to even the score at 5-5. Styrhas took a 6-5 lead, but Gerst came back again to force a 6-6 tiebreaker. Gerst then went up 6-0 in the tiebreaker and eventually claimed a winning margin of 7-2 for the Mustangs. Stryhas, who has been hampered by a shoulder injury the last few weeks, had won 11 consecutive singles matches prior to today’s loss.
It seems that playing eight matches in nine days finally caught up with Sacramento State, which had its six match winning streak snapped while falling to 15-6 on the season. The Hornets have still won 14 of their last 16 matches, including a 6-2 record over the last nine days. Cal Poly improved to 9-9 this season, including a 6-1 mark on its home surface.
The Hornets started strong, winning the doubles point by defeating Cal Poly in two of the three doubles matches. The tandem of Stryhas and sophomore Kiryl Harbatsiuk defeated Drew Jacobs and Robert Foy, 8-6. Sophomore Marko Starcevic and junior Holden Ching beat Alexander Sonesson and Gerst, 8-6.
On the singles side, the Hornets had difficulty against a Cal Poly team that has now won each of its last three matches. Harbatsiuk had success against Jacobs, winning in straight sets, 6-4, 7-5. Freshman Jason Smith, who improved his winning streak to seven straight singles matches, defeated Sonesson, 7-5, 4-6, 7-5.
Cal Poly won the first three singles matches to take a 3-1 lead as Ching (6-3, 6-0 at No. 4), Starcevic (6-4, 6-4 at No. 5) and sophomore Artur Klimenka (6-2, 6-3 at No. 6) each lost for the Hornets. Harbatsiuk and Smith both won their matches to tie the score at 3-3 and force the deciding match between Gerst and Stryhas.
The Hornets will now take the next five days off before the team squares off with Causeway rival UC Davis on Friday, April 10, at 2 p.m. in Davis. The match is a big one in the schools’ quest to win this year’s Causeway Cup, an annual all-sports challenge between the two programs. UC Davis currently holds a small 43.33-41.67 lead in the race with matchups in men’s tennis, women’s tennis, women’s rowing, and men’s and women’s track and field still remaining.
Tennis Match Results
Sacramento State vs Cal Poly
Apr 04, 2009 at San Luis Obispo, Calif.
Cal Poly 4, Sacramento State 3
1. HARBATSIUK, Kiryl (SAC) def. Drew Jacobs (CP) 6-4, 7-5
2. Andrew Gerst (CP) def. STRYHAS, Anton (SAC) 7-5, 6-7, 7-6 (7-2)
3. SMITH, Jason (SAC) def. Alexander Sonesson (CP) 7-5, 4-6, 7-5
4. Darryn Young (CP) def. CHING, Holden (SAC) 6-3, 6-0
5. Robert Foy (CP) def. STARCEVIC, Marko (SAC) 6-4, 6-4
6. Brian McPhee (CP) def. KLIMENKA, Artur (SAC) 6-2, 6-3
1. HARBATSIUK, Kiryl/STRYHAS, Anton (SAC) def. Drew Jacobs/Robert Foy (CP) 8-6
2. STARCEVIC, Marko/CHING, Holden (SAC) def. Alexander Sonesson/ Andrew Gerst (CP) 8-6
3. Brian McPhee/Nick Berger (CP) def. KLIMENKA, Artur/SMITH, Jason (SAC) 8-6
Sacramento State 15-6
Cal Poly 9-9
Order of finish: Doubles (2,1,3); Singles (4,6,5,1,3,2)