MENâ€™S TENNIS OPENS SEASON WITH LOSS AT NAU; BIG SKY WINNING STREAK SNAPPED
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Northern Arizona won the doubles point, and followed with five singles victories to upset Sacramento State, 6-1, in a Big Sky Confernece men’s tennis match Thursday afternoon at the Flagstaff Athletic Club. The match marked the season opener, and the Big Sky opener for both teams.
Prior to today’s loss, Sacramento State had won 24 consecutive Big Sky regular season matches, a streak which dated back four years. In fact, the Hornets’ last loss to a conference team during the regular season came at Montana State (7-0) on April 1, 2006. Sacramento State has won four consecutive Big Sky regular season titles. Northern Arizona, which finished third in the conference last year, had dropped six straight meetings to Sacramento State prior to today’s win.
With heavy snow falling outside forcing roads, businesses, the Grand Canyon and even Northern Arizona to close down for the day, Sacramento State also had trouble with the altitude as Flagstaff sits nearly 7,000 feet above sea level.
Junior Kiryl Harbatsiuk, who is the Big Sky’s reigning MVP, picked up the Hornets’ lone win, defeating the Lumberjacks’ Patrick Schimmelbauer by the score of 6-2, 6-4. Harbatsiuk and teammate Anton Stryhas were the only Sacramento State duo to win their doubles match (9-7).
The day was marked by tight matches in both the singles and doubles competitions. In singles play, seven different sets were decided by tiebreakers. That included the Hornets’ Anton Stryhas dropping his match at No. 1 to Andrew Reiff by the score of 7-6 (4), 6-7 (1), 7-6 (3). At No. 3, Hornet sophomore Jason Smith fell to Robin Pezzutto, 6-2, 7-6 (5), and at No. 5, Holden Ching lost to NAU’s David Flodberg. 6-3, 6-7 (1), 7-6 (2).
In doubles play, the Hornets’ tandems of Tim Lantin/Marko Starcevic (9-7 at No. 2), and Ching/Smith (8-6 at No. 3) both lost close matches.
Sacramento State will return to action on Saturday, Jan. 23, for a road matchup at ninth-ranked Stanford. Match time is 1 p.m.
Tennis Match Results
Sacramento State vs Northern Arizona
Jan 21, 2010 at Flagstaff, Ariz.
(Flagstaff Athletic Club)
Northern Arizona 6, Sacramento State 1
1. REIFF, Andrew (NAU) def. STRYHAS, Anton (SAC) 7-6 (7-4), 6-7 (1-7), 7-6 (7-3)
2. HARBATSIUK, Kiryl (SAC) def. SCHIMMELBAUER, P (NAU) 6-2, 6-4
3. PEZZUTTO, Robin (NAU) def. SMITH, Jason (SAC) 6-2, 7-6 (7-5)
4. RAMADIER, Hugo (NAU) def. STARCEVIC, Marko (SAC) 6-7 (5-7), 6-4, 6-4
5. FLODBERG, David (NAU) def. CHING, Holden (SAC) 6-3, 6-7 (1-7), 7-6 (7-2)
6. TAYLOR, Kevin (NAU) def. LANTIN, Tim (SAC) 6-2, 7-5
1. HARBATSIUK, Kiryl/STRYHAS, Anton (SAC) def. FLODBERG, David/SCHIMMELBAUER, P (NAU) 8-6
2. RAMADIER, Hugo/TAYLOR, Kevin (NAU) def. LANTIN, Tim/STARCEVIC, Marko (SAC) 9-7
3. PEZZUTTO, Robin/REIFF, Andrew (NAU) def. CHING, Holden/SMITH, Jason (SAC) 8-6
Sacramento State 0-1
Northern Arizona 1-0