MEN'S TENNIS PLAYS CLOSE IN LOSS TO #6 USC
LOS ANGELES — The Sacramento State men’s tennis team battled sixth-ranked USC in a handful of matches but came up short in a 7-0 loss to the Trojans, Saturday afternoon at Marks Stadium.
For the second straight day, the Hornets dealt with bad weather in Southern California. On Friday, the team had its match against UC Riverside halted with Sacramento State trailing 3-2. On Saturday, morning showers pushed the match back three hours.
USC picked up the doubles points by sweeping all three matches. The Trojans’ first win came at number two where Abdullah Magdas and Daniel Nguyen defeated Holden Ching and Marko Starcevic, 8-1. The other two matches went down to the wire before USC was able to prevail. The 11th-ranked tandem of Robert Farah and Daniel Nguyen downed Anton Stryhas and Kiryl Harbatsiuk, 8-5, at No. 1. The final match was decided in a tie-breaker where Andrew Kells and Jaak Poldma outlasted Jason Smith and Jimmy Roberts, 8-7 (9-7).
The Trojans clinched the match with three quick wins in singles but were challenged in the final three singles matches. Wins at No. 6, No. 3 and No. 4 gave USC a 4-0 lead. Harbatsiuk then rallied from a 6-3 loss in the opening set at No. 2 to win 6-2 and force a super tie-break against 32nd-ranked Poldma. Once there, Poldma claimed an 11-9 win.
Freshman Jason Smith opened his match at No. 5 against Jason McNotten with a 7-5 win in the first set. McNotten answered with a 6-1 win in the second set and the two then battled to a 16-14 decision in favor of McNotten in the super tie-break.
The final singles match came at No. 1 where Farah, who is ranked fifth nationally, edged Stryhas, 7-6 (7-4), 7-5.
Sacramento State will play its third match in as many days when it travels to Loyola Marymount on Sunday, Jan. 25.
#5 USC 7, SACRAMENTO STATE 0
1. #11 Robert Farah/Steve Johnson (USC) def. Anton Stryhas/Kiryl Harbatsiuk, 8-5
2. Abdullah Magdas/Daniel Nguyen (USC) def. Holden Ching/Marko Starcevic, 8-1
3. Andrew Kells/Jaak Poldma (USC) def. Jason Smith/Jimmy Roberts, 8-7 (9-7)
1. #5 Robert Farah (USC) def. Anton Stryhas, 7-6 (7-4), 7-5
2. #32 Jaak Poldma (USC) def. Kiryl Harbatsiuk, 6-3, 2-6, (11-9)
3. Steve Johnson (USC) def. Holden Ching, 6-1, 6-1
4. Daniel Nguyen (USC) def. Marko Starcevic, 6-1, 6-0
5. Jason McNotten (USC) def. Jason Smith, 5-7, 6-1, (16-14)
6. Daniel Gilner (USC) def. Joe DeGuzman, 6-0, 6-0
Order of finish: Doubles 2, 1, 3; Singles 6, 3, 4, 2, 5, 1