Eastern blanks Bengals to remain undefeated in Big Sky duels
The Eastern Washington University men's tennis team did not drop a single set en route to its fifth win in a row and second-straight in Big Sky Conference play. The Eagles rolled past Idaho State, 7-0, on Saturday (Feb. 11) at the Jim Thorpe Fieldhouse in Cheney, Wash.
"We came out hungry," said EWU head coach Darren Haworth. "They guys played smart and focused."
At No. 1 singles, Cuic won his first set against Norman in a tiebreaker, 7-6 (7-2). But the second set was quite the opposite, as Cuic won without dropping a single game.
Russell remained undefeated at No. 2 singles, winning his third-straight match in that position. He topped ISU's Krzyzstof Stempien, 6-3, 6-4.
"When James is serving well, he is tough to beat," said Haworth. "He has just been really mentally tough this season."
Navarro, playing at No. 3 singles, also won in straight sets, 6-4, 6-2. Henninger extended his perfect 2012 singles record to 5-0 with a dominant showing against Dan Buckingham at No. 4. Henninger took the match, 6-3, 6-1.
Sanchez topped Dakota Pate at No. 5, 6-4, 6-3, to also keep his flawless singles record intact, which is now at 4-0. Rounding out singles was Koetje, who won easily at No. 6 with a 6-1, 6-3 decision.
The Eagles have two more competitive matches on tap next weekend, as they take on Oregon on Friday (Feb. 17) at 6 p.m. in Eugene, followed by another Big Sky showdown against Portland State on Saturday (Feb. 18) in Portland.
Eastern Washington 7, Idaho State 0
02/11/12 at Cheney, Wash. (Jim Thorpe Fieldhouse)
1. CUIC, Ilija (EWU-M) def. NORMAN, Charles (ISU) 7-6 (7-2), 6-0
2. RUSSELL, James (EWU-M) def. STEMPIEN, Krzyzstof (ISU) 6-3, 6-4
3. NAVARRO, Mario (EWU-M) def. GROSS, Nate (ISU) 6-4, 6-2
4. HENNINGER, Chad (EWU-M) def. BUCKINGHAM, Dan (ISU) 6-3, 6-1
5. SANCHEZ, Julian (EWU-M) def. PATE, Dakota (ISU) 6-4, 6-3
6. KOETJE, Kyle (EWU-M) def. MILLER, Austin (ISU) 6-1, 6-3
1. CUIC, Ilija/KOETJE, Kyle (EWU-M) def. NORMAN, Charles/MILLER, Austin (ISU) 8-3
2. NAVARRO, Mario/RUSSELL, James (EWU-M) def. BUCKINGHAM, Dan/GROSS, Nate (ISU) 8-1
3. HENNINGER, Chad/SANCHEZ, Julian (EWU-M) def. PATE, Dakota/STEMPIEN, Krzyzstof (ISU) 8-6
Idaho State (2-6, 1-1 Big Sky)
Eastern Washington (5-2, 2-0 Big Sky)