April 26, 2014
SAN DIEGO, Calif. - San Diego capped a remarkable season with a 4-1 victory against Pepperdine to win the 2014 West Coast Conference Men’s Tennis Championship Saturday at the Barnes Tennis Center. The Toreros (17-7) capture their second West Coast Conference Championship title since 2011 at the expense of the No. 51 Waves (17-13).
After an electrifying performance in doubles, the Toreros stayed strong. Even after an attempt by the Waves to shake their momentum, junior Andrew Raphaelson clinched for the second time against Pepperdine this season, pushing the Toreros to a 4-1 victory.
In doubles, sophomores Uros Petronijevic and Romain Kalaydjian, who also made the WCC All-Tournament Team, quickly found their groove. The pair pulled away with the win and defeated Waves' Tom Hill and Rakshay Thakkar 8-4. No. 14 Alex Sarkissian and Francis Alcantara took revenge over No. 38 senior Clarke Spinosa and freshman Filip Vittek, picking up an 8-5 victory. The point would then come down to juniors Ciaran Fitzgerald and Andrew Raphaelson. The tandem came back from a 4-0 deficit, eventually equalizing the match at 7-7. With the pressure being felt on both ends, Raphaelson came up with a clutch forehand down the line to give the Toreros the edge and later the win 8-7(5).
Freshman Filip Vittek got revenge of his own, knocking off Waves' David Sofaer 6-4, 6-1 to extend the Torero lead. Petronijevic, who fell to Pepperdine's Francis Alacantara in their previous meeting, came back from a significant deficit in the first set to defeat Alacantara 7-6(2), 6-4.
USD earns an automatic bid for the NCAA Championships which are set to begin on May 15. NCAA Championship team selections will be announced at 2 p.m. on Tuesday, April 29 at NCAA.com. The singles and doubles championship field will be released on Wednesday, April 30. Pepperdine seniors Sarkissian and Alcantara are expected to make the doubles field, while Sarkissian should represent the Waves in singles.
#44 San Diego 4, #51 Pepperdine 1
1. #14 Alex Sarkissian/Francis Alcantara (PEP) def. #38 Clarke Spinosa/Filip Vittek (USD) 8-5
2. Uros Petronijevic/Romain Kalaydjian (USD) def. Tom Hill/Rakshay Thakkar (PEP) 8-4
3. Ciaran Fitzgerald/Andrew Raphaelson (USD) def. David Sofaer/Alex Giannini (PEP) 8-7 (7-5)
Order of finish: 1, 2, 3
1. #53 Clarke Spinosa (USD) vs. #31 Alex Sarkissian (PEP) 6-2, 6-7 (5-7), 4-4, unfinished
2. Uros Petronijevic (USD) def. Francis Alcantara (PEP) 7-6 (7-2), 6-4
3. Filip Vittek (USD) def. David Sofaer (PEP) 6-4, 6-1
4. Stefan Menichella (PEP) def. Romain Kalaydjian (USD) 7-5, 7-6 (8-6)
5. Ciaran Fitzgerald (USD) vs. Rakshay Thakkar (PEP) 4-6, 6-4, 3-2, unfinished
6. Andrew Raphaelson (USD) def. Pedro Leme (PEP) 7-5, 4-6, 6-4
Order of finish: 3, 2, 4, 6
2014 West Coast Conference Men’s Tennis All-Tournament Team
Men’s Doubles West Coast Conference All-Tournament Team
No. 1. John Lamble/Ilya Osintsev – Santa Clara
No. 2. Uros Petronijevic/Romain Kalaydjian – San Diego
No. 3. Miguel Diaz/Alex Hamilton – Pacific
Men’s Singles West Coast Conference All-Tournament Team
No. 1 - Clarke Spinosa – San Diego
No. 2 - Ilya Osintsev – Santa Clara
No. 3 - Ratan Gill - Portland
No. 4 - Daniel Alameh – Pacific
No. 5 - Ciaran Fitzgerald – San Diego
No. 6 – Germain Bahri – San Francisco
From PepperdineSports.com and USDToreros.com