Top seeds grounded in clay courts No. 1, No. 3 are among 6 collegiate seeds ousted

September 28, 1996|By Doug Brown | Doug Brown,SUN STAFF

Fresno State's Fredrik Giers said it all for the upset victims in the T. Rowe Price National Intercollegiate Clay Court Championships.

"It was constant pain for one hour," the Swede said after his 6-2, 6-0 second-round loss to California's Bobby Mahal yesterday at the Suburban Club. "I was so bad, I almost felt sick. I tried and tried and nothing worked. He played well, and I never got into the match."

What particularly galled Giers was that he came here with such high hopes, as the No. 3 seed, after reaching last year's final, where he lost to Texas Christian's Paul Robinson. The tournament is the opening leg of college tennis' grand slam.

"I can't ever remember losing and feeling quite this way," Giers said."

Giers has company on the sidelines. Of the top eight seeds, he and No. 1 Cedric Kauffman of Kentucky were among the six eliminated yesterday.

"There are always a lot of surprises in this tournament," said Tennessee coach John Kreis, chairman of the men's tournament committee. "You'd think Giers would be the favorite, because he played so well last year, but it's early in the college season and some guys are more ready to go than others."

The women's favorites didn't fare much better. Top seed Kylie Hunt of Kansas and No. 3 Jennifer Hall of Notre Dame bowed out, as well as two others of the first eight seeds.

When the chaos subsided, the semifinal pairings were set for today, starting at 10: 30 a.m. with the women: No. 8 Kati Kocsis of UCLA vs. No. 2 Vicky Maes of Arizona and No. 5 Lauren Nikolaus of William and Mary vs. Baili Camino of Alabama. In men's play, No. 2 Thomas Dupre of Mississippi State will face Ludde Sundin of Kentucky and Ignacio Hirigoyen of SMU will meet No. 7 Matt Ballay of Mississippi State. Tomorrow's finals will start at 9 a.m.

(Results, 9C)

Pub Date: 9/28/96

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