Men's tennis takes one from Spartans

Washington's 21st ranked men's tennis team improved to 4-0 with a 6-1 win over #55 Michigan State on Sunday afternoon at the Nordstrom Tennis Center. As they did on Friday evening against the New Mexico Lobos, the Huskies won five of six singles matches, but against the Spartans they never trailed, winning the doubles point.

Christoph Palmanshofer and Alex Vlaski had 19 winners apiece as the Huskies hammered the duo of Andy Formanczyk and Cameron Marshall 8-2 in the top doubles match. Formanczyk held serve in the opening game for the Spartans but then Palmanshofer and Vlaski won the next three games, including a break of Marshall in the third game, punctuated by two big forehand winners from Palmanshofer. After Formanczyk held serve for 2-3, the Huskies won the next five games to close out the match.

In the #2 doubles match Daniel Chu and Peter Scharler rallied from an 0-2 deficit to defeat Mike Brown and Nick Rinks 8-5 and give the Huskies the doubles point. Unfortunately, the Huskies' #3 duo of Andy Kuharszky and Michael Ricks saw their season opening three match winning streak come to an end as they lost a tight affair to the Spartans' Michael Flowers and Adam Monich 8-6.

In singles, Vlaski, who does not yet have a ranking from the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) because he spent the autumn playing professionally, put the Huskies up 2-0 with a straight set 6-4,6-1 win over Formanczyk in the #1 position.

Scharler, playing his first match at #6 after opening the season at #5, beat Brown 6-2,6-3 to make it 3-0 Huskies.

Palmanshofer then clinched the match for the Huskies with a 6-4,6-2 win over Marshall at the #2 position. In the first set of that match, both players held serve to 4-4. Then in the ninth game a forehand unforced error by Marshall gave Palmanshofer two break points at 15-40. Marshall saved both of them on a service winner and an errant forehand by Palmanshofer, but then he gave away the game with two forehand errors. Serving for the set at 30-30, Palmanshofer put it away with a pair of service winners.

In the second set, Palmanshofer broke Marshall in the opening game and held for 2-0. Leading 4-2, Palmanshofer got another break in the seventh game on four unforced errors by Marshall for 5-2 and then held serve with four winners to close out the match.

Michigan State took one singles match at #4 as Monich handed Kuharszky his first loss of the season in singles, winning 7-6(3),6-3.

That left the final point of the match on court #3 at #5 singles between the Huskies' Chris Floyd and the Spartans' Joe McWilliams. Floyd took the first set in a tiebreak 7-6(7-5). Then in the second set with the score knotted at 5-5, McWilliams broke Floyd for a 6-5 lead and had a chance to serve to even the match at a set apiece, but he squandered the chance. He double faulted twice and got broke at love, forcing the set into a tiebreak. Floyd took a 3 points to 1 lead and then had four match points at 6-2, but McWilliams saved three of them with two winners and a Floyd volley error to cut the deficit to 6-5. Finally on the fourth match point Floyd put away McWilliams, drilling a big forehand winner into the corner that McWilliams could only weakly put into the net.

The Huskies return to the hardcourts of the Nordstrom Tennis Center when they host the Great Northwest Shootout from Friday, February 4 to Sunday, February 6. Continuing to prepare themselves for the rigorous Pac-10 season by facing ranked non-conference opponents, the Huskies will face #11 Ohio State, #19 Tulane and #44 Minnesota. Top Stories