Gauchos Eliminated by No. 11 Seed Pepperdine in First Round of NCAA Tournament

Sasha Gryaznov (Photo by Steve Chen)
Sasha Gryaznov (Photo by Steve Chen)

MALIBU, Calif. – The Gauchos were ousted by No. 11 seeded Pepperdine in Malibu on Friday, dropping the doubles point and three more singles matches en route to a 4-0 loss.

UCSB was outmatched by a strong Pepperdine squad who recently won their 40th consecutive WCC title and made the semifinals of the NCAA Tournament last season. The Gauchos' season ends at 12-14 overall, while Pepperdine will move on to face No. 20 LSU at home in the second round.

Pepperdine had a hot start in doubles, clinching the doubles point with victories at courts 2 and 3. The Waves' Tearney/Sarkissian took an early lead against Recknagel/Bouillin and never looked back, defeating the Gaucho duo by a score of 8-2. At No. 3 doubles, Pepperdine pair Hovhannisyan/Sofaer opened up their match against Riminton/Seemann 6-1 but UCSB fought back to cut the deficit to 7-5 before dropping the match 8-5. The match at court 1 was suspended after the Waves claimed the doubles point.

The Waves continued their dominant play in singles, winning the first set in all six of the singles matches.

Mbonisi Ndimande was first off the court, getting shut out 6-0, 6-0 at No. 1 singles by the No. 11-ranked player in the country, Sebastian Fanselow. Pepperdine took a commanding 3-0 lead after No. 102 Francis Alcantara defeated Ziad Sultan at the No. 4 position in straight sets, 6-1, 6-3. The Waves clinched a spot in the second round of the NCAA Tournament with a win at court 3, where #107 Finn Tearney was triumphant in straight sets 6-4, 6-0 against UCSB's Axel Bouillin.

Play at courts 2, 5, and 6 was suspended after the Waves won the match.


1. Fanselow/Alcantara (PEPP) vs. Ndimande/Sultan (UCSB) 7-3, DNF
2. Tearney/Sarkissian (PEPP) def. Recknagel/Bouillin (UCSB) 8-2
3. Hovhannisyan/Sofaer (PEPP) def. Riminton/Seemann (UCSB) 8-5


1. #11 Sebastian Fanselow (PEPP) def. Mbonisi Ndimande (UCSB) 6-0, 6-0
2. #62 Alex Sarkissian (PEPP) vs. Benjamin Recknagel (UCSB) 6-3, 4-1 DNF
3. #107 Finn Tearney (PEPP) def. Axel Bouillin (UCSB) 6-4 6-0
4. #102 Francis Alcantara (PEPP) def. Ziad Sultan (UCSB) 6-1, 6-3
5. Mousheg Hovhannisyan (PEPP) vs. Sasha Gryaznov (UCSB) 6-0, 3-3 DNF
6. David Sofaer (PEPP) vs. Jacob Johnson (UCSB) 6-1, 5-0 DNF

Order of Finish: Doubles (2, 3); Singles (1, 4, 3)