AZUSA, Calif. -- The NAIA’s No. 2-ranked Azusa Pacific got an early start to what was originally scheduled as a 10-match homestand, adding Hope International at the front end of over a month of home matches after the Royals’ courts were unavailable due to a scheduling conflict. Hope International ended up visiting the Cougars’ home courts at Citrus College instead, and Azusa Pacific put together an impressive 9-0 GSAC win to extend its conference all-sports record of consecutive GSAC victories to 56 matches.
After sweeping through doubles by a combined 24-6 total, Azusa Pacific recorded 5 singles victories in straight sets. Sophomore Matthijs Bolsius was the only Cougar to split sets, claiming the final point of the shutout when Hope International’s top singles player Rajko Mladenovic retired to injury when trailing 3-0 in the final set.
The numbers 4 through 6 singles for Azusa Pacific won every set by at least 4 games, led by sophomore Danny Colten’s 6-1, 6-1 win in the No. 6 spot. Sophomore Robby Dabbs posted a 6-1, 6-2 win at No. 4, and senior Art Fatkhiev collected a 6-2, 6-2 victory at No. 5. Junior Patrick Kur and sophomore Mathias Weber were also straight-sets singles winners at No. 2 and 3, respectively.
Fatkhiev and sophomore Jan Friedrich posted the largest margin of victory in doubles with an 8-1 win at No. 3.
With the win, Azusa Pacific improves to 9-1 overall, 4-0 GSAC, while Hope International drops to 3-4 overall, 0-3 GSAC. The Cougars’ next 10 contests are at its home courts located at Citrus College, beginning with Saturday’s 1 p.m. matchup with No. 17-ranked Concordia.
Azusa Pacific 9, Hope International 0
1. Matthijs Bolsius (APU) def. Rajko Mladenovic (HIU), 6-2, 3-6, 3-0 (ret.)
2. Patrick Kur (APU) def. Marko Kustudija (HIU), 6-4, 6-0
3. Mathias Weber (APU) def. Johan Weich (HIU), 7-5, 6-2
4. Robby Dabbs (APU) def. Felix Haufe (HIU), 6-1, 6-2
5. Art Fatkhiev (APU) def. Joey Nedelisky (HIU), 6-2, 6-2
6. Danny Colten (APU) def. Brett Harvey (HIU), 6-1, 6-1
1. Kur/Weber (APU) def. Kustudija/Mladenovic (HIU), 8-2
2. Bolsius/Dabbs (APU) def. Haufe/Weich (HIU), 8-3
3. Fatkhiev/Jan Friedrich (APU) def. Harvey/Nedelisky (HIU), 8-1