Doubles duo last hope for Bears in NCAA Championships

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The Bears sent two singles players and one doubles pair to this year’s NCAA Men’s Division I Championships at the Dan Magill Tennis Center in Athens, Ga.

In the 64-man singles tournament, senior Nick Andrews battled No. 56 George Coupland of Mississippi State on Wednesday. Andrews lost a close 4-6, 7-6(7), 6-4 bout to Coupland in the first round of the tournament.

Meanwhile, sophomore Ben McLachlan faced No. 13 Artem Illyushin, also of Mississippi State. McLachlan, however, fared worse than Andrews in his first NCAA Singles Championship appearance, suffering a 6-1, 6-3 defeat in the first round as well.

With both Cal players gone from singles play, only the No. 6 duo of Andrews and Christoffer Konigsfeldt is left to represent the Bears in the doubles tournament. In the round of 32 the pair faced the No. 65 group of Phillip Anderson and Jadon Phillips from New Mexico State. Andrews and Konigsfeldt secured a 6-3, 2-6, 6-4 victory.

With the win, the pair improved from last year’s performance, in which they exited early after a first-round loss. On Friday the tandem will play Texas Tech’s No. 18 Raony Carvalho and Gonzalo Escobar, who they had just faced two weeks ago in the NCAA Team Championships. In that last matchup, they ended on a 7-7 tie before play was suspended.

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