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University Overwhelms Troy

Boys' tennis: Top-seeded Trojans return to Division II final with 14-4 win over previously unbeaten Warriors.

May 26, 2000|DAVE McKIBBEN | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Playing with an air of confidence and a taste of bitterness in their mouths, the top-seeded University Trojans routed previously undefeated Troy Thursday, 14-4, in the Southern Section Division II boys' tennis semifinals.

The Trojans (19-0), who blew a 6-2 lead in losing last year's Division II final to North Hollywood Harvard-Westlake, will meet second-seeded Brentwood in a 2 p.m. title match Wednesday at the Claremont Club.

The Trojans never gave Troy much hope, winning five of the first six sets. They clinched the match early by taking 10 of the first 11 sets. University's No. 1 singles player, Aaron Yovan, led the romp, winning all three of his sets, 6-0.

"We want everyone to know that we're ready this year," said Yovan, a sophomore who's ranked third in Southern California in the boys' 16 division. "We want to win it and we wanted to make a statement today."

Troy, the Freeway League champion, won its first 25 matches but had never faced a team like University.

"We played as hard as we could play," Troy Coach George Vallance said. "They have a great team. That's as good a singles lineup as you're going to see anywhere.

"We had a hard time matching up. Our strength is their strength. We were just outgunned."

Sophomore Henry Mak, University's No. 2 singles player, also swept his sets, 6-2, 7-5, 6-2, as did the No. 2 doubles team of Ed Chen and Scott Morgan, 6-1, 6-3, 6-0.

Jack Li, University's third singles player, lost to fellow freshman Jeffrey Das, 6-2, in the second round and then defaulted his third set because of a sore ankle. Li said his injury will not keep him out of today's section individual singles tournament or the team final against Brentwood.

University Coach Jeff Hammond didn't seem surprised by his team's lopsided victory.

"The only player I knew about was Jeffrey Das," he said. "Beyond that, I didn't know what to expect. I thought we were a little tight to open the match."

University's closest matches have been two 12-6 victories over Corona del Mar in Pacific Coast League play. But Hammond said he expects the final to be tight.

"We have to be at the top of our game on all six courts," he said. "It's been a great ride up to this point, but now we're going to see how good we are."

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