Gianni Ross and Iñaki Montes picked up singles victories against the Trojans
ORLANDO, Fla. – The No. 5 Virginia men’s tennis team (23-3) had its season end in the Round of 16 of the 2021 NCAA Men’s Tennis Championship with a 4-2 loss against No. 12 USC (23-6) on Monday (May 17) at the USTA National Campus in Orlando, Fla.
USC won the doubles point and picked up wins on singles courts two, three and five. Freshman Iñaki Montes (Pamplona, Spain) and senior Gianni Ross (Chicago, Ill.) earned the points for the Cavaliers.
The Trojans held an early edge in doubles, picking up a 6-4 win on court one. Courts two and three were tight matches with court two going to a tiebreaker with USC coming out ahead 7-5 to take the point. Court three was abandoned at 6-5 on-serve.
USC won four first sets in singles, but both freshman Chris Rodesch (Angelsburg, Luxembourg) and grad student Carl Söderlund (Stockholm, Sweden) won their second sets to force thirds.
USC took a 2-0 lead with a straight-set win on court two. UVA rallied with back-to-back wins on courts six and four to tie the match. Ross was the first to put points on the board, topping Jake Sands 6-4, 7-5 on court six. Montes followed minutes later with his 7-6 (4), 6-2 win against Bradley Frye.
On court five, Lodewijk Weststrate picked up a 6-3, 7-5 victory against Ryan Goetz on to put the Trojans on the brink. Stefan Dostanic won the clincher against Rodesch on court three 6-3, 5-7, 6-2.
Söderlund was up a break in his third set against Daniel Cukierman when play was suspended.
FROM HEAD COACH ANDRES PEDROSO
“I think USC just played a little better than us. Our guys fought like crazy. I don’t think we played that well. USC just played a little better and they won a couple more deuce points. They competed really well. We’re used to that. When we play USC, they’ve always competed great.
I felt good with our matchups. I felt like the whole team was composed and we were ready to fight. I just think USC played a little better than us today, and that’s how it goes. There were just a couple spots where we didn’t play close to our best tennis and that’s how it happens. You don’t really have control over how well you play, you just have control over how hard you fight, and I thought we fought on every single court. I think every guy left it out there.”
NOTING THE CAVALIERS
- Virginia had a 17-match win streak snapped by the loss. UVA had not lost a match since being edged 4-3 by Illinois on Valentine’s Day in the final day of the ITA Indoor Championship
- Gianni Ross ends his career on a 10-match win streak, going 14-3 in singles this season. He finishes his four-year career with a 64-29 mark in singles
- Iñaki Montes (Pamplona, Spain) went 3-0 in singles in the NCAA Championship. He is 14-1 in his last 15 completed singles matches
- USC is now 7-1 against Virginia in the NCAA Championship including knocking the Cavaliers out of the tournament in four straight years (2009-12) and again in 2014
- The Trojans opened 2021 ranked No. 1 in the nation — the same spot it wrapped the shortened 2020 season. USC is ranked No. 12 in the last ITA computerized rankings, the same as its tournament seeding
ON THE HORIZON
- The NCAA Individual Championships will take place May 23-28 at the USTA National Campus in Orlando, Fla.
- Carl Söderlund and Jeffrey von der Schulenburg have earned invitations to the singles championship. Söderlund is the No. 7 seed in the tournament
- Söderlund and William Woodall have earned a spot in the doubles championship
#12 USC 4, #5 Virginia 2
- #7 Carl Soderlund (VA) vs. #49 Daniel Cukierman (USC) 4-6, 7-6 (7-2), 1-0, unfinished
- #52 Riley Smith (USC) def. #44 J vd Schulenburg (VA) 6-2, 7-5
- #116 Stefan Dostanic (USC) def. Chris Rodesch (VA) 6-3, 5-7, 6-2
- #61 Inaki Montes (VA) def. Bradley Frye (USC) 7-6 (4), 6-2
- Lodewijk Weststrate (USC) def. #106 Ryan Goetz (VA) 6-3, 7-5
- Gianni Ross (VA) def. Jake Sands (USC) 6-4, 7-5
- #10 Daniel Cukierman/Riley Smith (USC) def. #14 Carl Soderlund/William Woodall (VA) 6-4
- Stefan Dostanic/Bradley Frye (USC) def. #89 Chris Rodesch/Ryan Goetz (VA) 7-6 (5)
- Inaki Montes/J vd Schulenburg (VA) vs. Jake Sands/Ryder Jackson (USC) 5-6, unfinished
Order of finish: Doubles (1,2); Singles (2,6,4,5,3)