USC too much for UI tennis team
By The News-Gazette
URBANA — A day after falling to the nation’s top-ranked men’s tennis team, Illinois lost to the second-ranked squad in the country.
Southern California left Atkins Tennis Center with a 6-1 victory Monday following the nonconference dual meet against No. 15 Illinois.
Illinois won its lone singles match at No. 5 when Farris Gosea outlasted Eric Johnson 4-6, 6-4, 10-8.
“USC is a good team, but we need to get better,” Gosea said. “Look for us to improve our play and be ready for any challenge. (Monday) was just the difference of a point here and there.”
Ross Guignon nearly pulled out a win for Illinois at No. 3 singles before he lost 4-6, 6-4, 10-8 to Yannick Hanfmann. No other Illini won a set in the four remaining singles matches.
Illinois (7-6) claimed a victory in doubles. Gosea and Tim Kopinski won 8-6 at No. 1 doubles, but the Trojans (15-2) won the other two doubles matches to earn the point.
Illinois returns to its home court at 3 p.m. Saturday against Big Ten foe Nebraska, where it will try to improve upon its 2-0 start in league action.
“Still too much up and down and not enough steady play throughout,” Illinois coach Brad Dancer said. “I’ll talk to each guy individually and see where breakdowns are occurring.”
Streak’s up to six. Illinois won its sixth straight game, holding off Southern Illinois 2-1 in 10 innings Monday night at Rent One Park in Marion.
Heavy rains canceled the teams’ game Sunday.
Michael Hurwitz drove in the game-winning run with a pinch-hit single in the top of the 10th inning. Four Illinois pitchers combined on a three-hitter, and a pinch-hit RBI single by Ryan Nagle tied the game at 1 in the top of the eighth.
“I’ve been really pleased with what the guys have been doing off the bench,” Illinois coach Dan Hartleb said. “Everyone has been very accepting of their roles, and it has made us a very good team at this point.”
Illinois improved to 3-0 in extra-inning games this season.
In women’s gymnastics:
Weinstein honored. Alina Weinstein won her third Big Ten Gymnast of the Week honor Monday, becoming the first gymnast in program history to accomplish the feat three times in a season.
The senior broke multiple records at last Saturday’s State of Illinois Classic in Chicago, which included a perfect 10 on the vault. She became the second Illinois gymnast to record the elusive perfect score and third gymnast in Division I to have a 10 on vault this season.