PHOENIX, Ariz. – Freshman Patrick Schimmelbauer and sophomore Robin Pezzutto claimed singles victories, but No. 70 Oregon earned the doubles point and four singles matches for a 5-2 triumph on Friday at the Paseo Racquet Club in Phoenix. The Lumberjacks dropped to 0-3 against ranked opponents this season and 8-7 overall while the Ducks improved to 12-6.
With sophomore Andrew Reiff back from a two-match absence, the Lumberjacks returned to their normal lineup on Friday and were competitive in several matches against the ranked Ducks. Reiff forced a second-set tiebreaker in his match at No. 1 against Oregon's Alexander Cornelissen, ranked No. 103 in the country, in a 6-3, 7-6 (4) victory for the Ducks. At No. 2, Schimmelbauer rallied from a first-set loss to claim a 3-6, 6-4, 10-8 victory over Oregon senior Marcos Verdasco. Pezzutto followed a similar script at No. 4, rallying to defeat Jose Izquierdo 4-6, 7-6, 10-7 for his eighth singles win of the season. The Lumberjacks came close to another win at No. 6, but freshman Kevin Taylor was outlasted by Oregon's Aaron Clissold, 7-5, 7-5.
In doubles action to start the day, the top NAU doubles team of Reiff and Pezzutto forced a tiebreak at No. 1 before bowing to Cornelissen and Verdasco, 8-7 (7-4). Oregon would claim 8-5 and 8-4 wins at No. 2 and 3 doubles, respectively, to get the early lead en route to a 5-2 victory.
"I thought we really returned to form today after two sluggish performances in our last-two matches," assistant coach Rich Paulosky said. "The guys played really well and had a lot of chances to get some more matches in doubles and singles. We're back playing the way we should and are looking forward to the weekend."
The Lumberjacks will play back-to-back Big Sky matches on Saturday and Sunday, starting tomorrow with a 1 p.m. tilt at Weber State.