UH men's tennis eliminated


POSTED: Sunday, May 10, 2009

There will be no Sweet 16 for the Hawaii men's tennis program. The Rainbow Warriors saw their season come to an end yesterday at the hands of No. 7 UCLA in the second round of the NCAA championship tournament.

The Bruins won 4-0 at the Los Angeles Tennis Center, extending their winning streak to 11. UCLA (19-4) is advancing to the NCAA round of 16 for the 33rd consecutive year, a streak that dates to 1977, when the current team format was adopted.

Hawaii saw its five-match winning streak snapped in finishing the year at 11-10. The season included a second consecutive Western Athletic Conference title and the program's first NCAA victory, that coming in Friday's first round against Oklahoma State.

“;Our guys gained a lot respect,”; UH coach John Nelson said. “;We beat two Top 20 teams in a row (Boise State and Oklahoma State) and today we faced the No. 7 team in the nation with the confidence that we would win the match.

“;Our team was not content with just making it to the second round and were genuinely disappointed with the loss. It shows how far they've come, and I couldn't be more proud of this team.”;

The afternoon started off well for Hawaii, with Dennis Lajola and Jeff Fitch winning the No. 1 doubles match 8-3. But UCLA came back to earn the doubles point with victories at Nos. 2 and 3.

The Bruins wrapped up the match with wins at Nos. 3, 5 and 6 singles. Fitch lost his final match for UH 6-0, 6-1 to Michael Look, ranked No. 100.

Freshman Philipp Eberhard lost at the No. 6 court to No. 107 Nick Meister, 6-1, 7-5. Harel Srugo clinched the win for the Bruins at No. 3 by grinding out a 6-4, 6-4 victory over freshman Leo Rosenberg.

The Rainbow Warriors were leading in two of the last three singles matches when play was halted, including that of Sascha Heinemann at No. 4. UH's only four-time all-conference honoree had won his last 13 contests.