AZUSA, Calif. -- Amherst had a little bit more left in its tank than Azusa Pacific did, completing an impressive comeback victory over the Cougars Thursday afternoon, 5-4. After trailing 2-1 through the completion of doubles, and trailing in the first set of four of the six singles matches, the NCAA Division III No. 4-ranked Jeffs turned the match around to defeat Division II's No. 11-ranked Cougars.
At No. 1 doubles, Jan Meyer and Gary Yam teamed up for the first time in their careers. After 15 consecutive holds, a Meyer backhand volley winner gave the Cougars the only break they needed to wrap up the set 9-7. At No. 3, Tomas Aranguiz and Alan Leahy paired up for their fourth win as a team in six sets, winning 8-6.
Amherst stayed in the match with an 8-4 victory from the 15th-ranked pairing of Michael Solimano and Aaron Revzin. The score was quickly tied at two when Meyer was forced to retire from his singles match just five games due to illness which he battled through during doubles.
The Cougars responded well, winning love-sets on courts two, five, and six. Frederik Wilkens held onto his lead for a 6-0, 6-3 win, and Yam did as well, 6-0, 6-4. At No. 4 singles, Aaron Revzin defeated Pascal Engel, 6-3, 6-2, cutting the Cougars’ lead to 4-3.
Amherst completed the comeback with wins at No. 3 and 5 singles, despite trailing at different times in each match. Justin Reindel won 12 of the last 13 games after failing to win a single game in the opening set for an 0-6, 6-1, 6-0 victory on court five. Then Anton Zykov claimed the clinching win at No. 3. Zykov broke serve in the first set to force a tiebreaker, which he won. Then in the second set, he came back from down 2-3 to win the final four games for a 7-6, 6-3 win.
The loss was just the fourth of the year for Azusa Pacific, which falls to 11-4. This was the first of an eight-match home stretch to end the regular season. The Cougars host Holy Names on Saturday.