’Eaters Crawl to Third in Big West
Cal Poly 5, UCI 2
UC Irvine’s final match of the regular season ended in disappointment as they fell to Cal Poly 5-2 on April 21. Despite a strong showing in the doubles matches, UCI failed to sustain their lead through the singles.
The ’Eaters finish the regular season in third place (3-2) in the Big West and 6-11 overall. The team will face off against UCR in the first round of the Big West Tournament on April 27 in Indian Wells Tennis Garden in Indio, California.
Senior Fabian Matthews and freshman Shuhei Shibahara maintained their perfect doubles record (5-0 together) as they ousted their opponents with an 8-2 victory. Sophomore Ryan Cheung and senior Jon Kazarian followed with a dominant 8-1 victory to clinch the doubles point for UCI. Unfortunately, senior Sam Gould and freshman Jacob Jung were pummeled 8-2 as the Anteaters failed to secure a sweep.
Ranked No. 92 Matthews faced off against No. 34 Andre Dome in a rather lopsided singles match. Despite both being ranked, Dome made easy work out of Matthews (6-0, 6-4) to earn Cal Poly’s first point.
Shibahara failed to help UCI retake the lead after getting outplayed in his match for a 6-2 and 6-0 loss.
After Cheung lost his match to give Poly a 3-1 lead, Gould made up for his doubles woes by crushing his opponent 6-3 and 6-1 to give the Anteaters a chance to comeback.
However, after losing a tightly contested first set 7-6, Jung could not keep up with Poly’s Brian McPhee, losing the clinching set 6-2. The win secures Cal Poly with a perfect 4-0 record in the Big West and the No. 1 seed in the Big West tournament.