Othman Zerouali-Ouariti played a hard-fought victory over Kalle Rosen from Denver on Saturday for a 6-7, 6-4 (11-9) win.
Feb. 24, 2007
SALT LAKE CITY - The University of Utah men's tennis team is still undefeated in home matches after Saturday's battle against No. 60 Denver where the Utes won 5-2.
The Utes and Pioneers came ready to battle on Saturday. In doubles play, Zach Ganger and Miron Mann faced No. 44 Adam Holmstrom and Niklas Persson at the No. 1 slot. After going point-for-point, the Ute duo defeated the Pioneers 8-5. Othman Zerouali-Ouariti and Jason Smits teamed up at the No. 2 slot to face Nejc Smole and Rav Dhatt from Denver. Posting the top doubles score for the day, the Ute duo smashed an 8-3 win over the Denver duo. Ending the doubles competition was Wes Hancock and Timmy Allin at the No. 3 slot. Facing Timo Kienle and Kalle Rosen, the Utes posted an 8-4 match win over the Pioneers.
With the Utes 1-0, the Pioneers were eager to come right back. The first one to finish was freshman Smits who represented the Utes at the No. 4 slot. He faced Niklas Persson from the Pioneers to take the match 6-3, 6-2. Soon after, Allin finished his match against Rav Dhatt at the No. 6 slot, posting a 6-2, 7-5 win and edging the Utes to 3-0.
Mann faced Nejc Smole from the Pioneers at the No. 2 slot for a hard fought battle. The Ute gave a strong effort, but was unable to stop Smole. The Pioneer took the match 6-3, 6-4. Meanwhile, teammate Hancock was battling against Timo Kienle at the No. 3 slot. The Ute took the first set 6-3, and led by a large margin in the second. Kienle stepped up his game in attempts to take the second set from Hancock, but the Ute wouldn't have it. Hancock took the set and match 6-3, 7-5.
Last to finish was No. 50 Ganger. He faced No. 20 Adam Holmstrom at the No. 1 slot on Saturday. The Ute and Pioneer went head-to-head in the first set, but Holmstrom pulled out a 7-6 win. Ganger stepped it up in the second set to take it 6-4. In the third set, the Ute pulled ahead 5-2, but Holmstrom came back to win two straight games. Although Ganger was ahead at 5-4, he received a penalty from the judge for conduct, which tied up the set at 5-5. The Ute and Pioneer battled hard through the next sets, but Holmstrom ended the set to take the match victory 7-6, 4-6, 7-6.
Quote from Assistant Coach Graeme Cox:
"This was an outstanding team effort against a higher ranked opponent today. We bounced back well after enduring two difficult matches last weekend in Florida. There was a focus on certain aspects all week in practice that we, as a team, know we need to execute under pressure; we were better at some of those things today."
"Our team is showing a fighting spirit and everyone is playing a role in our improvement from the top to the bottom of the roster."
Utah 5, Denver 2 Doubles: 1. Zach Ganger/Miron Mann (Utah) def. #44 Adam Holmstrom/Nik Persson (DU); 8-5 2. Othman Zerouali-Ouariti/Jason Smits (Utah) def. Nejc Smole/Rav Dhatt (DU); 8-3 3. Wes Hancock/Timmy Allin (Utah) def. Timo Kienle/Kalle Rosen (DU); 8-4
Singles: 1. #20 Adam Holmstrom (DU) def. #50 Zach Ganger (Utah); 7-6, 4-6, 7-6 2. Nejc Smole (DU) def. Miron Mann (Utah); 6-3, 6-4 3. Wes Hancock (Utah) def. Timo Kienle (DU); 6-3, 7-5 4. Jason Smits (Utah) def. Nik Persson (DU); 6-3, 6-2 5. Othman Zerouali-Ouariti (Utah) def. Dalle Rosen (DU); 6-7, 6-4 (11-9) 6. Timmy Allin (Utah) def. Rav Dhatt (DU); 6-2, 7-5