The Harvard men's tennis team ended its season Saturday with a 5-2 loss to Stanford in the opening round of the NCAA Championships in Athens, Ga.
Stanford was too strong and too deep for the Crimson, now 17-7. The Cardinal squad, seeded fifth in the tournament, features several players with impressive accomplishments on the pro tour.
At first singles, Stanford's Dan Goldie, one of the top 100 players in the world according to the Association of Tennis Professionals computer, defeated Larry Scott, 6-3, 6-3. Scott pulled off a stunning upset earlier this season when he knocked off Goldie in straight sets.
At number two, the Crimson's Bill Stanley fell to Jim Grabb, 6-3, 6-3. Grabb is ranked among the top 150 players on the ATP computer.
Harvard's Peter Palandjian surprised Pat McEnroe in a three-set upset at number three. McEnroe, the younger brother of a better known tennis player, is about 60 places higher than Palandjian in the latest collegiate singles rankings. However, Palandjian was not intimidated, taking a 6-2, 4-6, 6-4 decision.
At number four, the Crimson's Arkie Engle lost to Eric Rosenfeld--who is ranked among the top 40 collegiate singles players--6-3, 6-2.
Harvard's Paul Palandjian accounted for the Crimson's second victory with a stunning upset of John Letts at number five. Letts reached the doubles semifinals one of the four major professional "Grand Slam" events, the Australian Open, earlier this year. Nonetheless, Palandjian prevailed in three sets, 6-4, 2-6, 6-3.
At number six, the Crimson's Darryl Laddin lost for the second time this season to Scott Moody of Stanford, 6-4, 7-5.
Leading 4-2 after singles, the Cardinal needed only one doubles win to sew up the match. McEnroe and Letts provided the decisive victory, combining to defeat Stanley and Peter Palandjian, 6-2, 6-2.
The other two doubles matches were not completed because Stanford had already secured the match victory.
Although Harvard has been eliminated from team competition, individual singles and doubles tournaments will be played later in the week.
Scott is entered in the singles tournament. He and Arkie Engle will also team up for the doubles championships.
Harvard's women's tennis team also had a tough time against its Cardinal competition, as Stanford blanked the netwomen, 9-0, in first round NCAA competition.
The Crimson's six singles players--Kathy Vigna, Cindy Buchsbaum, Erika Smith, Robin Boss, Cynthia Austrian and Martha Berkman--all dropped decisions to Cardinal opponents.
In doubles play, the Stanford duo of Patty Fendick and Leigh Anne Eldredge defeated Vigna and Smith, 6-1, 7-5. Cari Hagey and Stephanie Savides edged Boss and Berkman, 6-4, 7-6 (with a 7-5 tiebreaker), while Kay Tittle and Marianne Werdell knocked Austrian and Buchsbaum, 7-5, 6-2.
Vigna will compete in NCAA singles play, and will team up with Smith in doubles competition later in the week.