Friday, February 22

Four men’s tennis underclassmen face Southern California competition


Sophomore Bryce Pereira has only competed in doubles so far this season, first with sophomore Keegan Smith and then freshman Max Wild. Last season, Pereira recorded a 6-8 singles record and went 24-12 doubles. (Ken Shin/Daily Bruin staff)

Sophomore Bryce Pereira has only competed in doubles so far this season, first with sophomore Keegan Smith and then freshman Max Wild. Last season, Pereira recorded a 6-8 singles record and went 24-12 doubles. (Ken Shin/Daily Bruin staff)


The Bruin underclassmen continued fall play against Southern California opposition this past weekend.

UCLA men’s tennis sent four underclassmen to the Southern California Intercollegiate Championships at USC’s Marks Tennis Stadium this weekend, where they competed in singles and doubles matches.

No. 7-seeded freshman Eric Hahn advanced to the quarterfinals of the tournament’s main draw singles after defeating Cal Poly’s Antoine Noel 6-4, 1-6, 6-1 in the round of 32 and UC Santa Barbara’s Victor Krustev 3-6, 6-2, 6-0.

Hahn fell to No. 1 seed USC’s Daniel Cukierman 6-2, 6-3 in the quarterfinals. Cukierman defeated Hahn 6-2, 6-2 when the two faced off at the Intercollegiate Tennis Association regionals one week prior.

Coach Billy Martin said Hahn has shown promise while other players work to resolve areas of their game.

“(It was a) little bit better than what I saw at Pepperdine, quite honestly,” Martin said. “(Freshman) Max Wild did not have a good tournament, but we’ve been working on a lot of things in (Wild’s) game and this is the time to do it. (Hahn) won two matches in the main draw before losing to the same guy, Cukierman, … who we just know is a good player – just more physical – so that’s not a bad loss by any means.”

Every Bruin competing in singles was able to advance to the main draw after redshirt sophomore Connor Rapp and Wild advanced from the qualifying bracket.

Rapp defeated San Diego’s Armin Rostami 6-3, 6-2 in qualifiers before withdrawing from his main draw match against Texas Tech’s Bjorn Thomson due to injury.

“It was good, I had to start in qualifying and I had a good match that I was really happy with the way I played,” Rapp said. “In the second round, I came out slow and maybe was a little nervous. Playing at USC is always kind of overwhelming at first and I felt I was playing really good tennis, but then had an unfortunate event when I rolled my ankle and had to pull out of the match.”

Wild beat Texas Tech’s Justin Bloss 7-6, 6-7, 10-5 before besting Azusa Pacific’s Roberto Luconi 7-5, 6-2. Wild fell in the first round of main draw play to No. 2-seeded Sameer Kumar from Stanford 6-0, 6-1.

UCLA sent a new pair, sophomore Bryce Pereira and Wild, to compete in main draw doubles. The duo beat Brocton Andrus and David Ball of BYU before losing to USC’s No. 4-seeded Jack Jaede and Bradley Frye by 8-6.

Wild said he enjoyed playing with Pereira and hopes they get paired together more often before final decisions are made regarding doubles teams.

“I love playing with (Pereira) and that was our first time playing together in a tournament,” Wild said. “We’ve been friends for a while and I think that we click really well. He likes one specific side and I like the other one so hopefully, we get another chance to play.”

The Bruins will return to play with two tournaments next week, the Larry Easley Memorial Classic and the Jack Kramer Fall Invitational.

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Assistant Sports editor

McCarthy is an assistant Sports editor for the men's tennis, women's soccer, track and field and men's volleyball beats. He was previously a reporter on the men's volleyball and men's water polo beats. McCarthy is a second-year English and history student from Atlanta, Georgia. He is an avid Tottenham Hotspur and Conor McGregor fan.


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