Guillaume Tonelli and Eldar Dzhafarov won their first first round match in doubles on Friday to lead the University of Nevada men's tennis team's effort in the first day of the ITA Rolex Regional Fall Tournament in Santa Clara, Calif.
Tonelli and Dzhafarov beat Stanford's Ken Kao and Dave Ryan 8-3. Tonelli also won in the first round in singles, beating St. Mary's Achim Christner 6-33, 1-6, 6-3. Tonelli this suffered a heartbreaking loss in the second round to California's Dean Wallace, losing 6-4, 3-6, 5-7.
Also in singles for Nevada, Milos Popovic lost to Washington's Mike Ricks in the first round 3-6, 6-7 (6-8). Dzhafarov, Rafel Stupka and Randy Reynolds all lost in the first round in singles for Nevada. In doubles, Popovic and Reynolds also lost in the first round.
"We competed very strongly the first day even though we didn't pull some close matches out," said Nevada coach Chad Stoloff, a Carson High graduate.
"The fact that the team is creating the opportunities for themselves is very important. This is the first step to success. The guys earned some respect today by the way they competed. They were class acts on and off the court!
I am very pleased with the progress being made by the team; they are consistently working on learning and improving. We are having fun in the process of the journey! Tomorrow we will continue to strive to take advantage of opportunities before us."
The tournament continues through Tuesday.