Upsets Prevail in the Semifinal Round of the NCAA Tennis Championships
May 19, 2008
Tulsa, Oklahoma - In both the men's and women's semifinals on Monday, the lower seeded team advanced to the championship in all four matches. For the women, No. 7 UCLA will play No. 8 California in a PAC-10 final at 2:00 pm (CT), while defending national champion Georgia, the No. 4 seed, will face-off against No. 7 seed Texas in the men's national championship match at 6:00 pm (CT).
For the women, Cal defeated the highest seed remaining in No. 5 Baylor by a 4-3 score. California grabbed the doubles point and took a 2-0 lead with Claire Ilcinkas grabbing the first singles victory, before Baylor tied the score at 2-2. Baylor won at No.5, and California tied it 3-3 with a win at No. 6. Cal's No.2 Marina Cossou clinched the victory after losing the first set 6-4, by coming back with scores of 6-1 and 6-2.
In the other women's semifinal match, UCLA picked up a 4-2 victory by winning the doubles point and capturing singles wins at No. 1, 4 and 5. The final two UCLA wins came after the score was tied 2-2.
It's the first national championship match for the Cal Bears, while UCLA will be playing in its sixth national title match. Cal and UCLA split the season series 1-1, but the Bruins lead the overall series 33-25.
On the men's side, No. 7 seed Texas upset No. 3 UCLA by a 4-2 count and will be appearing in their first national championship match. Texas seized momentum by winning the doubles point and also captured wins at No. 1, 4 and 6.
In a rematch of last year's semifinal, the No. 1 seed Virginia Cavaliers faced off against the defending national champion and No. 4 seed Georgia Bulldogs. Once again, the Bulldogs prevailed with a 4-3 victory. Despite losing the doubles point, Georgia captured singles wins in order at No. 3, 2 and 5 to take a 3-1 lead. Virginia's Ted Angelinos grabbed a 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 victory at the No. 6 position, while the nation's No. 1-ranked Somdev Devvarman improved his overall record to 38-1 by battling back to win the final two sets 6-3, 6-4 after falling in the first 6-2 and knot the team score at 3-3.
The match came down to the No. 4 position, as Georgia's Jamie Hunt took advantage of a cramping Sanam Singh and came back to win the final two sets 6-3, 6-0 after dropping the first set 6-4.
Georgia will be playing in its 13th national finals match and will be looking for its sixth championship crown and second straight.