Peter Smith Wins 600th Career Match As No. 5 Trojans Beat No. 23 Ducks 5-0 In Photo Finish|
March 31, 2017
LOS ANGELES, CALIF. -- The No. 5 USC men's tennis team kicked out to a winning start to Pac-12 action with a rare 5-0 victory over visiting No. 23 Oregon.The win marked USC head coach Peter Smith's 600 career win as a collegiate head coach. Already with five NCAA Championships claimed at the helm of the USC program, Smith's 600th career win puts another indelible mark next to his name in the history books of collegiate tennis. Up 3-0 in the match, the Trojans had two courts finish near-simultaneously, with Jack Jaede breaking the tape just a moment before teammate Thibault Forget won his match to top off the 5-0 conference win at Marks Stadium. The victory improves the Trojans to 18-3 overall with a 1-0 Pac-12 mark.
Doubles was a tight affair early on before the Trojans got up a break on every court. From there it was an all-out sprint for the USC teams to the finish line, with court three's Rob Bellamy and Jack Jaede coming though first with a 6-2 win over Oregon's Stevens/Tanaka. With courts one and two both speeding toward wins, it was Nick Crystal and Laurens Verboven at the No. 2 spot who closed out first, notching a 6-3 win over Oregon's Clissold/Laurent to secure that first point for the Trojans. That left court one suspended with USC's #20-ranked Brandon Holt and Riley Smith at 5-3 over Amos/A/ Soemarno.
In singles action, senior Nick Crystal stayed in high gear as he peeled out to a 6-4, 6-1 win over Simon Stevens on court two to craft a quick 2-0 lead for the Trojans. On the rest of the courts, however, matches were far tighter, with three-setters coming up on courts one, four, five and six. At the No. 3 spot, #47 Logan Smith had snagged the first set in a tiebreaker, but was down 3-4 in the second before hitting the gas. A key break allowed Smith to serve for the win, and he'd gut out a long match point before delivering the final blow to beat Akihiro Tanaka 7-6 (2), 6-4 and make it a 3-0 Trojan advantage with four three-setters still raging.
Bit by bit, USC began to move into the driver's seats on courts four and five. While Thibault Forget was in position with match point at the No. 5 spot, teammate Jack Jaede maneuvered himself into striking distance as well. Jaede delivered the winning blow on court four just milliseconds before Forget finished off his court five match, giving Jaede the clincher while Forget's win topped off a 5-0 victory for the Trojans over the Ducks. Jade had claimed a 7-5, 4-6, 6-2 win over Jayson Amos to get USC the 4-0 lead before Forget finished off his 6-2, 5-7, 6-2 decision over Cormac Clissold. That suspended three-setters still in full force on courts one and six, where Brandon Holt and Riley Smith were each locked even against their respective Oregon opponents when the match came to a close.
USC now turns to another Pac-12 clash tomorrow (April 1) with a 1 p.m. match against No. 32 Washington at Marks Stadium.
#5 USC 5, #23 Oregon 0
March 31, 2017 | Marks Stadium (Los Angeles, Calif.)
(1) #20 Holt/R. Smith (USC) vs. Amos/A. Soemarno (ORE) - 5-3 susp.
(2) Crystal/Verboven (USC) def. Clissold/Laurent (ORE) - 6-3
(3) Bellamy/Jaede (USC) def. Stevens/Tanaka (ORE) - 6-2
USC wins doubles point.
Order of finish: 3, 2
(1) #21 Brandon Holt (USC) vs. #40 Thomas Laurent (ORE) - 4-6, 6-3, 4-4 susp.
(2) Nick Crystal (USC) def. Simon Stevens (ORE) - 6-4, 6-1
(3) #47 Logan Smith (USC) def. Akihiro Tanaka (ORE) - 7-6 (2), 6-4
(4) Jack Jaede (USC) def. Jayson Amos (ORE) - 7-5, 4-6, 6-2*
(5) Thibault Forget (USC) def. Cormac Clissold (ORE) - 6-2, 5-7, 6-2
(6) Riley Smith (USC) vs. Ty Gentry (ORE) - 3-6, 6-4, 3-3 susp.
Order of finish: 2, 3, 4*, 5