No. 12 Stanford men’s tennis (5-0, 0-0 Pac-12) welcomed No. 8 USC (5-1, 0-0 Pac-12) and No. 23 UCLA (2-3, 0-0 Pac-12) to Palo Alto this past weekend and defeated both, solidifying the Cardinal’s status as the team to beat in the conference.
The Trojans were first up for Stanford in a dual match that was played on Saturday. USC set the tone to start, winning the doubles point after victories on courts one and three. It was the first time this season that the Cardinal dropped the doubles point and started from behind heading into singles play.
The 1-0 deficit did not deter the home team, however. Fifth-year Axel Geller was the first off of the courts with a 6-4, 6-3 court-three win over No. 70 Bradley Frye. Sophomore Aryan Chaudhary then took down No. 40 Lodewijk Weststrate 6-3, 6-4 at the five spot to turn the tables and give the Cardinal the 2-1 lead. Stanford just needed to win two more matches to clinch the victory.
The bottom of the lineup continued to put in work as freshman Max Basing defeated No. 35 Peter Makk 6-3, 6-4 and senior Sangeet Sridhar won 7-5, 7-5 at the No. 6 position. Sophomore Arthur Fery was just a point away from taking down the nation’s No. 6 overall player in Stefan Dostanic, but Sridhar’s win ended the other remaining matches. The Cardinal headed into their Sunday match-up with the Bruins fresh off of the upset over USC.
This time, Stanford got the doubles point, thanks to wins from Fery and senior Alexandre Rotsaert on court one, and Geller and senior Tomas Kopczynski on court two. Head coach Paul Goldstein changed up the singles lineup from the squad’s previous few matches, taking out Geller, sliding the bottom three up one spot each and adding Kopczynski as the No. 6.
Rotsaert doubled the Cardinal’s lead with a 6-2, 6-1 win over No. 41 Alexander Hoogmartens on court two. Sridhar and Basing added two more to the team’s tally on courts five and three, respectively, for the clincher. The Bruins then got one back as Karl Lee moved past Chaudhary in a tiebreaker. Kopczynski won in a tiebreaker of his own, while Fery won at the top spot 7-6 (8), 7-5.
With a sweep of the two other main Pac-12 contenders, Stanford now turns its attention to a midweek matchup against UC Davis on Wednesday. It will start at 2 p.m. PT at the Taube Family Tennis Center.