ALTAMONTE SPRINGS, Fla. - The ninth-ranked UC San Diego men's tennis team suffered its first loss of the season on Wednesday, falling 5-0 to No. 10 Columbus State in the Round of 16 at the NCAA Division II Tennis Championships at Sanlando Park. The loss eliminates the Tritons from the NCAA Tournament.
UCSD struggled early, falling behind 3-0 in doubles. CSU's No. 3 tandem of Andre Mordhorst and Pasqual Duttlinger got the Cougars on the board first with an 8-1 win over Max Jiganti and Armaun Emami and the Cougars' No. 1 and No. 2 teams followed with identical 8-5 scores to put the Tritons in the three-point hole.
Columbus State's Gordan Divljak and Andre Mordhorst followed with wins in singles to secure the match, defeating Chapman Chan 6-2, 6-4, and Sam Ling 6-4, 6-1, at No. 2 and No. 4, respectively.
The final result hardly does justice to the Tritons' tremendous regular season, during which UCSD posted a perfect 20-0 dual match record.
"We just got beaten by a better team today," head coach Eric Steidlmayer said following Wednesday's match. "When you are beat by a better team, you just try to go out and get better. We competed, they were just better and it's that simple.
"We had a great season and I'm extremely pleased with the way our guys came together. I've got no complaints."
The Cougars advance to the quarterfinals where they will take on No. 28 Western New Mexico Thursday morning. WNMU, a team the Tritons defeated twice this season, took down West Virginia Wesleyan 5-1 on Wednesday.
1. Christophe Noblet (CSU) vs. Erik Elliott (UCSD) 6-3, 4-1, unfinished
2. Gordan Divljak (CSU) def. Chapman Chan (UCSD) 6-2, 6-4
3. Pasqual Duttlinger (CSU) vs. Junya Yoshida (UCSD) 6-3, 4-1, unfinished
4. Andre Mordhorst (CSU) def. Sam Ling (UCSD) 6-4, 6-1
5. Martin Shiskov (CSU) vs. Vincent Nguyen (UCSD) 6-3, 1-2, unfinished
6. Olivier Simonet (CSU) vs. Austin West (UCSD) 1-6, 6-2, unfinished
Order of Finish: Doubles (3,1,2); Singles (2,4)
NCAA Division II Tennis Championships
Round of 16
Columbus State 5, UCSD 0