AZUSA, Calif.-- Just two days after an impressive showing at the Grand Canyon Tournament, the Azusa Pacific men’s tennis team continued its torrid start with a 9-0 sweep of the NAIA’s No. 5 ranked Concordia in its home opener. The Cougars didn’t drop a set on the day, and saw four players stay perfect in singles action this season.
“We’re overachieving already. I really didn’t think we’d play this well. I expected some ups and downs, but they guys have responded well,” said head coach Mark Bohren. “I though the guys might be a little tired, but everybody came out and played with good intensity and didn’t have much of a problem today.”
Ben Eger picked up his 11th consecutive victory, improving to 7-0 in 2013 after making quick work of Patrick Szerementa at No. 4 with a blitzing 6-0, 6-0 sweep for the Cougars’ first singles win. After a slow start the NCAA’s (Division II) 6th ranked Jochem Hoefnagels also lifted his record to 7-0, posting his 28th consecutive singles victory dating back to 2012 with a match-clinching 6-3, 6-0 defeat of No. 14 (NAIA) Bruno Kliskinic at No. 1.
No. 31 ranked Frederik Wilkens kept his perfect mark intact, beating Marc Reddmann 6-1, 6-0 at No. 2, while 20th ranked Jan Meyer remained unscathed with his sixth consecutive victory at No. 3 singles (6-0, 6-2). Whitman Hough elevated his record to 5-2, smashing Farren Casad 6-3, 6-0, and Gary Yam pushed his record to 5-1 after beating Van Morgen 6-1, 6-1 at No. 6 singles to wrap up the day.
In doubles play the Cougars secured a sweep after a comeback win at No. 2. In the match the 24th ranked team of Wilkens and Yam trailed 4-1, but rallied back to take a 7-6 lead before clinching the win after Wilkens’ match-point serve was returned to Yam at the net, who then backhanded the winner.
Hoefnagels and Meyer opened the morning with an 8-2 over Redmann and Szeremeta at No. 1, before Hough and Eger improved to 6-1 with an 8-1 win at No. 3. The victory elevated Azusa Pacific’s record to 7-0 this season, with four of the team’s wins coming against opponents ranked inside the top-30 nationally in their perspective divisions (Division II, NAIA). The Cougars will take a much needed break before returning to action next Monday for a road showdown with Fresno Pacific.