Photo by Michael Wong
PASADENA, Calif. (Apr. 16, 2016) – Junior Ruthwick Pathireddy (Cerritos, Calif. / Whitney) and freshman Derik Nguyen (Anaheim, Calif. / Canyon) scored an historic regional upset over the West No. 15-ranked doubles team of national No. 15 University of Redlands on Saturday morning.
The regional victory marked the Beavers' first in at least the last five years, likely extending as far as the last decade and possibly beyond.
All three Beavers duos put up incredible fights against the deep and talented Bulldogs pairings. No court was separated by two games at any point until Redlands' West No. 3-ranked team came up with a break on the final changeover at #1 for the 8-6 victory. Meanwhile, as the Bulldogs took control with a break at #3 to lead 6-5, Pathireddy and Nguyen did the same to go up 7-6 at #2. Redlands would take #3 doubles, 8-5, just moments before the Beavers sealed the victory with a break in the final game at #2, 9-7.
Redlands quickly took the first set at four courts and led by a break at #3, but freshman Zixiao Li (Coppell, Texas / Coppell) held his ground at #5 and stole the first set, taking the final two games. In his first match at #3, freshman Andre Liu (Novi, Mich. / Novi) nearly rallied from a 6-2 defeat in the first set before succumbing, 7-5, shortly after the Bulldogs clinched the match with wins at #1, #6 and #4. Li continued to fight, however, dropping the second set 6-3 but surging ahead in the superbreaker to post the 10-4 victory.
Head Coach Mandy Gamble and the Beavers head to the 116th Ojai Tennis Tournament from Friday-Sunday, Apr. 22-24.