Men’s Tennis

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Rain Checked

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Photo by Chris Baker
Ilja Ikonnikov's quick 6-0, 6-0 win was the Cougars' first victory of the day.

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Published
April 11, 2012
By
Chris Baker
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AZUSA, Calif.-- After weather threatened to cancel the match, the NAIA’s No. 4 Azusa Pacific streaked to a 6-0 win over Hawaii-Hilo (3-10) in an abbreviated contest that featured only singles play. The Cougars (17-1) adjusted to the potential cancellation, the shift to Citrus College, and the hour and a half delay with ease, winning all 12 sets to clinch the win before both teams opted to forego doubles play due to potential rain.

Jochem Hoefnagels, who earned NAIA Player of the Week honors, improved to 18-0 on the season with a 6-3, 6-3 win at No. 2 over Ryan Coffey. Janosch Apelt tallied a 6-2, 6-4 defeat of Carlos Quijano at No. 1, while Ilja Ikonnikov posted the first win of the day with a 6-0, 6-0 smash of Michael Gillespie at No. 5.

Ben Eger won his 10th straight match with a 6-1, 6-2 showing against Kallen Mizuguchi in the 4th position and Gary Yam registered a 6-1, 6-1 defeat of Thomas Dols in the 6th spot. Frederik Wilkens looked impressive in his win, beating Kaito Mizutani 6-2, 6-0 at No. 3.

With the win Azusa Pacific recorded its 14th consecutive victory heading into tomorrow’s showdown with the NAIA’s top ranked Fresno Pacific. The last time the two teams met the Sunbirds handed the Cougars their only loss of the year, beating Azusa Pacific 7-2. Hoefnagels posted the team’s only singles win, and teamed with partner Apelt to notch a victory at No. 1 doubles. Tomorrow’s match, which will be played at the Munson & Bavougian Tennis Complex, will begin at 10 a.m.