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Cougars Win Catfight

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March 26, 2005
Micah McDaniel
Azusa Pacific 7
Southwest Baptist (Mo.) 2

AZUSA, Calif. -- What was supposed to be a showdown between 2 of the best teams in the NAIA and NCAA Division II turned into a route as the NAIA’s top-ranked Azusa Pacific rallied from a 2-1 deficit to down NCAA Division II-power Southwest Baptist (Mo.), 7-2, Saturday in Azusa.

The win snaps the Cougars’ 2-game losing skid, their first since 2003, and improves them to 13-3 overall. The Bearcats suffer their fourth straight loss and fall to 7-8.

The Bearcats, who have been to 2 straight NCAA Division II Elite Eights, jumped out to a 2-1 lead after winning at Nos. 2 and 3 doubles by identical 9-7 scores.

However, the Cougars surged back in singles’ play, taking all 6 matches. In a battle between the top 2 players at their respective levels, Sam Fletcher downed Dante Cipulli at No. 1, 4-6, 6-4, 6-2. Cipulli is the reigning ITA NCAA Division II Singles’ National Champion as well as the ITA Super Bowl Champion.

1 – Sam Fletcher (APU) d. Dante Cipulli (SBU) 4-6, 6-4, 6-2
2 – David Goodman (APU) d. Daniel Prerad (SBU) 6-4, 6-2
3 – Adam Davidson (APU) d. Peter Joos (SBU) 6-2, 7-6
4 – Gordon Hong (APU) d. Hunter Emmott (SBU) 6-3, 3-6, 6-3
5 – Tom Jelsma (APU) d. Johan Nortje (SBU) 6-3, 6-4
6 – Alex Muresan (APU) d. Brian Bajema (SBU) 6-3, 6-4

1 – Fletcher/Davidson (APU) d. Cipulli/Nortje (SBU) 8-6
2 – Emmott/Prerad (SBU) d. Hong/Goodman (APU) 9-7
3 – Joos/Bajema (SBU) d. Muresan/Jelsma (APU) 9-7