Feb. 20, 2011
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IOWA CITY – The University of Iowa men’s team won for the second time in three days with a crushing victory over Western Michigan Sunday in the UI Field House. This time, the Hawkeyes (3-3 overall) took the dramatics out of it. Iowa swept Western Michigan 7-0, winning all but one doubles match.
After late dramatics pushed Iowa past Illinois State at home on Friday, Iowa was in control from start to finish against the Broncos (6-3). Iowa notched their first doubles team point in four matches, and then went a perfect 6-0 in singles action.
“It was a great weekend in the sense that we beat a really good team in a knockdown, tough match on Friday, and then defeated another tough team today by a big margin,” said Steve Houghton. “I would have never guessed we’d beat Western Michigan 7-0 in a million years. They’re a veteran team, so I’m proud of our guys.”
For the first time since the season opener, the Hawkeyes were the ones heading into singles action with a 1-0 advantage from doubles play. Juniors Marc Bruche and Will Vasos took the victory in No. 1 doubles, and senior Austen Kauss and freshman Jonas Dierckx teamed up in doubles for the first time this season to earn the No. 2 doubles win.
Kauss and Dierckx won the contest’s first match 8-4 against Western Michigan’s Kazuya Komada and Zeyad Montasser. The duo went up 4-0 and held on from there, and Kauss hit a blazing shot on match point that was unable to be handled by Montasser.
“I was proud of Jonas. We put him in a tough situation at number two doubles, and he and Austen haven’t played together,” said Houghton. “They made it look like they have been playing together for a while, and getting the doubles point finally was a good lift for us.”
Bruche and Vasos edged out Michael Calderone and Thomas Calderone, but didn’t have a lead in the match until taking a 6-5 advantage. Bruche drilled a serve that couldn’t be returned to net match point, and then did the same thing with another stellar serve to give Iowa the team doubles point as Bruche and Vasos claimed the match 8-6.
After a marathon singles match Friday night that required a third set tie-breaker victory, Vasos was the first Hawkeye to get off the court, making quick work of Western Michigan’s Simon Blomberg 6-1, 6-0. Vasos improved his singles record to 5-1, which leads the team.
Mroziewicz also had no problems in his contest with Cullen in No. 5 singles, winning 6-1, 6-3 to give Iowa a team lead of 3-0. It was Mroziewicz’s first singles win of the season in his second time in the singles lineup.
Bruche put Iowa ahead 4-0, which secured the team victory, with his fourth win of the season in No. 1 singles. Bruche took the first set against Michael Calderone 7-6, and then took the second set by a larger margin with a 6-3 advantage.
Dunn kept the momentum going for Iowa, defeating Brad Noel 6-2, 6-5. The Tempe, Arizona, native trailed at one point in both sets, but closed out strong. Dunn collected his fourth singles victory of the season with the win.
Although Iowa already had the team victory, senior Nikita Zotov and Kauss refused to be defeated in their matches as both closed out a rally at nearly the same time to win.
In No. 2 singles, Zotov lost his first set 6-2 against Komada. Zotov rebounded with a 6-2 victory in the next set. Since Iowa already had the team victory, the match went down to a tie-breaker instead of a third set. Zotov claimed the tie-breaker 11-9.
Less than a minute after Zotov’s win, Kauss kept the crowd on their feet with a 4-6, 6-4 (10-8) victory against Olivarez. Kauss proved to be clutch this weekend with his tie-breaker victory today and a three set victory against Illinois State to help Iowa win 4-3.
“It’s really hard to single anybody out after a win like this,” said Houghton. “I was impressed with Nikita and Austen’s resiliency. Tom and Garret also played great singles matches, and Marc is really playing tough matches in No. 1 singles and finding a way.”
Bruche, Vasos, Kauss and Dunn went 2-0 in singles on the weekend. Iowa will continue their home-stay this Wednesday, with a contest against an in-state rival. The Hawkeyes will host Drake at 6 p.m. inside the HTRC.
Iowa 7,Western Michigan 0
Singles Marc Bruche (IOWA) def. Michael Calderone (WMU) 7-6, 6-3 Nikita Zotov (IOWA) def. Kazuya Komada (WMU) 2-6, 6-4, (11-9) Will Vasos (IOWA) def. Simon Blomberg (WMU) 6-1, 6-0 Austen Kauss (IOWA) def. Pablo Olivarez (WMU) 4-6, 6-4, (10-8) Tom Mroziewicz (IOWA) def. Casey Cullen (WMU) 6-1, 6-3 Garret Dunn (IOWA) Brad Noel (WMU)
Doubles Bruche/Vasos (IOWA) def. Calderone/Thomas Calderone (WMU) 8-6 Jonas Dierckx/Kauss (IOWA) def. Komada/Zeyad Montasser (WMU) 8-4 Cullen/Olivarez (WMU) def. Mroziewicz/Dunn (IOWA) 8-6