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Jan. 29, 2006

URBANA, Ill. – The No. 1 Virginia men’s tennis team suffered its second loss of the season, the second on the road against a top ten opponent, falling to No. 4 Illinois 5-2 Sunday afternoon in front of over 1,000 fans at the Atkins Tennis Center. The 5-2 loss is the Cavaliers’ most lopsided setback since a 5-2 loss to North Carolina in 2004, a span of 46 matches.

Illinois took a 1-0 lead after taking a tight doubles point. The Cavaliers got an 8-6 win at No. 3 doubles from Doug Stewart (Malibu, Calif.) and Darrin Cohen (Lafayette, Calif.) as they defeated GD Jones and Pramod Dabir. However, the Illini scored a 9-8 win at No. 1 doubles, and a 9-7 win at No. 2 doubles to take the opening point.

The Illini carried that momentum into singles, where they took five of the six first sets. The only Cavalier to win his opening set was Rylan Rizza (Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif.), who completed a straight set win, 7-6, 6-1, over No. 59 Ruben Gonzalez at No. 4 singles. The Illini completed straight set wins at No. 6, No. 5, and No. 3 in the lineup to clinch the match for Illinois, who improved to 46-1 at home since 2002. Doug Stewart (Malibu, Calif.) and Somdev Devvarman (Chennai, India) each rallied to force third-set superbreakers, with Devvarman defeating Jones at No. 2 and Stewart falling short of an upset bid of No. 7 ranked Ryler Deheart at No. 1.

The Cavaliers (4-2) will return home on Saturday, February 4 as they host No. 7 Baylor. Match time at the Indoor Tennis Stadium at the Boar’s Head Sports Club is 5:00 p.m.

No. 4 Illinois 5, No. 1 Virginia 2

1. Kevin Anderson/Ryan Rowe (Ill) def. #35 Treat Huey/Somdev Devvarman (UVa) 9-8(5)
2. Ryler DeHeart/Ruben Gonzales (Ill) def. Rylan Rizza/Nick Meythaler (UVa) 9-7
3. #25 Doug Stewart/Darrin Cohen (UVa) def. GD Jones/Pramod Dabir (Ill) 8-6
Order of finish – 1, 3, 2

1. #7 Ryler DeHeart (Ill) def. Doug Stewart (UVa) 7-6(3), 3-6, 10-7
2. #10 Somdev Devvarman (UVa) def. GD Jones (Ill) 6-3, 4-6, 10-4
3. #37 Kevin Anderson (Ill) def. #6 Treat Huey (UVa) 6-4,6-4
4. #53 Rylan Rizza (UVa) def. #59 Ruben Gonzales (Ill) 7-6(4), 6-1
5. #99 Ryan Rowe (Ill) def. Nick Meythaler (UVa) 6-3, 6-2
6. Pramod Dabir (Ill) def. #46 Marko Miklo (UVa) 6-1, 6-0
Order of finish – 6, 5, 3, 4, 2, 1

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