FORT MYERS, Fla.--Sophomore Jan Meyer took home third place at the ITA Division II national singles championships, defeating a pair of seeded opponents, including No. 3 Armand Levandi (Lewis) in the third place match Saturday morning. Meyer qualified for the championships by winning the West region title at Cal State L.A. Former teammate and current Azusa Pacific assistant coach Jochem Hoefnagels placed fifth at last year’s tournament.
“He went as far as we ever have in the division II tournament. The tennis was amazing, whether he won or lost he played incredibly well. It was exciting for us to have someone go there as we continue to work towards other program goals we have,” said head coach Mark Bohren.
“We’ve had people do well in the NAIA portion, but getting our foot in the door with these other programs lets us know we’re doing the right things to compete at this level. It’s a good thing for everyone.”
Meyer had to come from behind for his first round win over No. 4 Pedro Scocuglia out of perennial Division II power Armstrong Atlantic. After dropping the first set 6-4, Meyer only let one game slide on his way to a 4-6, 6-1, 6-0 victory. With the win, Meyer clinched a top-four finish, making him the first Cougar to do so at an ITA national singles championship since Boris Bakalov won the Super Bowl.
Meyer, who helped the Cougars clinch the NCCAA National Championship in the spring, eventually fell to No. 1 seed Bruno Savi from West Florida 6-2, 6-2 in the semifinals before concluding the trip with his win over Levandi.
Azusa Pacific will begin the championship segment of its schedule in its campaign to defend the NCCAA national championship. The Cougars will also look to extend a 23-match regular season winning streak dating back to April 2012.