SEATTLE - Thirteenth-ranked and 13th-seeded California lost to fourth-ranked and fourth-seeded Ohio State, 4-0, on Friday in the opening round of the ITA National Men's Team Indoor Championship at the Nordstrom Tennis Center. The Golden Bears' record now stands at 3-3, while OSU improved to 9-1.
Cal moves on to the back draw of the tournament and, on Saturday at 2:30 p.m., will play at the Seattle Tennis Club against 11th-ranked Florida, which lost on Friday to fifth-ranked Pepperdine, 4-1. Ohio State advances to play Pepperdine.
"We had chances to win in the doubles and the singles," Cal head coach Peter Wright said. "Unfortunately, injuries to Ben McLachlan and Chase Melton kept us from really making the match interesting. Obviously Ohio State is a very good indoor team, and they played a solid match against us today."
In doubles, Cal played with some new pairs in the absence of injured senior Riki McLachlan, who previously teamed with junior Ben McLachlan, his brother, to form what was the nation's seventh-ranked doubles team for much of the year. This time, senior Christoffer Konigsfeldt and junior Campbell Johnson - ranked 14th in the latest ITA poll - played on court one. But the Bears lost to Ohio State's 36th-ranked duo of Peter Kobelt and Connor Smith, 8-6.
That clinched the doubles point for the Buckeyes, who had earlier won on court three, as Cal sophomores Gregory Bayane and Chase Melton fell to Blaz Rola/Kevin Metka, 8-5. Ben McLachlan and freshman Mads Engsted played to a 7-7 tie against Ohio State's Devin McCarthy and Ille Van Engelen on court two until the Buckeyes won the point.
In singles, Melton, ranked 102nd, lost, 6-3, 6-0, to Ohio State's Hunter Callahan on court six, and then the 62nd-ranked Rola won on court one, after Ben McLachlan, now ranked 82nd, retired with the score 6-3, 4-2, in Rola's favor.
Down 3-0 in the team score, Cal stayed alive in three of the matches, with the 61st-ranked Johnson leading McCarthy, 7-6(4), 2-2, on court three and Bayane leading No. 30 Smith, 7-6(2), 2-2, on court four. Over on court two, Konigsfeldt - a Cal co-captain along with Riki McLachlan - was battling the nation's second-ranked player in Kobelt, who won the first set 7-6(6). They played to 4-4 in the second set, but all three matches were abandoned after the Buckeyes' No. 37 Chris Diaz beat Engsted, 6-2, 6-4, to give Ohio State the 4-0 victory.
No. 4 Ohio State 4, No. 13 California 0
2013 ITA National Men's Team Indoor Championship
Friday, Feb. 15
Nordstrom Tennis Center | Seattle, Wash.
1: No. 36 Kobelt/Smith (Ohio State) def. No. 14 Konigsfeldt/Johnson (Cal) - 8-6
2: McCarthy/Van Engelen (Ohio State) vs. Engsted/B. McLachlan (Cal) - 7-7, DNF
3: Rola/Metka (Ohio State) def. Bayane/Melton (Cal) - 8-5 (Ohio State wins the doubles point)
Order of Finish: 3, 1.
1: No. 62 Blaz Rola (Ohio State) def. No. 82 Ben McLachlan (Cal) - 6-3, 4-2, ret.
2: No. 2 Peter Kobelt (Ohio State) vs. No. 48 Christoffer Konigsfeldt (Cal) - 7-6(4), 4-4, DNF
3: No. 61 Campbell Johnson (Cal) vs. Devin McCarthy (Ohio State) - 7-6(2), 2-2, DNF
4: Gregory Bayane (Cal) vs. No. 30 Connor Smith (Ohio State) - 7-6(6), 2-2, DNF
5: No. 37 Chris Diaz (Ohio State) def. Mads Engsted (Cal) - 6-2, 6-4
6: Hunter Callahan (Ohio State) def. No. 102 Chase Melton (Cal) - 6-3, 6-0
Order of Finish: 6, 1, 5.