SEATTLE, Wash. (2/16/08) - The Boise State Broncos, seeded 14, lost a hard fought 4-3 match to No. 11 Illinois Saturday afternoon in the consolation round at the ITA National Team Indoor Championships in Seattle. The Fighting Illini took the doubles point and then held off the Broncos in singles to claim the victory over the Boise State. The loss is the sixth in a row for coach Patton’s squad and drops their overall record to 5-6 on the season.
The Shields brothers, Luke and Clancy, won their second doubles match of the tournament for Boise State defeating Illinois’ Ruben Gonzales and Brandon Davis 8-3 at the number one position. Unfortunately, the Illini won the doubles point with victories at the number two and three teams. Illinois’ pair of Ryan Rowe and Billy Heiser knocked off Boise State’s Paul Koenke and Eric Roberson 8-3 at the two’s, while Waylon Chin and Marc Spicijaric edge the Broncos’ Steve Robertson and Brent Werbeck 8-6 at the three’s. That gave the Fighting Illini a one-point advantage heading into the singles.
The decision went down to the final singles match before the outcome was known. Paul Koenke pulled the Broncos even on the match score when he defeated Illinois’ Abe Souza at the number six singles in two sets 6-3, 6-4. The Illini regained the lead with a two-set victory at the three’s when Billy Heiser downed Brent Werbeck 6-3, 6-4 making the match score 2-1 Illinois.
Down one, Boise State standout Luke Shields evened the score again with a convincing victory at the number one singles defeating Ruben Gonzales 6-4, 6-2. Unfortunately, the next singles match decided went to Illinois giving them a 3-2 advantage as Ryan Rowe won 6-4, 6-4 over Clancy Shields at the number two position.
The Broncos rallied for a third time when Piotr Dilaj took a come from behind three-set decision over Illinois’ Marc Spicijaric at the four’s with a 1-6, 6-3, 6-1 victory. That meant the deciding match was the number five position where Boise State’s Steve Robertson lost a tough one in a third set tiebreaker to Waylon Chin by the score of 6-2, 4-6, 7-6 (2). That gave the Fighting Illini the decisive point and the 4-3 win over the Broncos.
Boise State will continue at the ITA championship on Sunday when they meet the loser of the Washington vs. Alabama match which was not decided when this story went to print.
2008 ITA National Team Indoor Championships
Boise State vs. Illinois
Seattle, Washington (Seattle Tennis Club)
Feb. 16, 2008
No. 11 Illinois def. No. 14 Boise State, 4-3
1. C. Shields/L. Shields (BSU) def. Gonzales/Davis (UI), 8-3
2. Rowe/Heiser (UI) def. Koenke/Roberson (BSU), 8-3
3. Chin/Spicijaric (UI) def. Robertson/Werbeck (BSU), 8-6
1. Luke Shields (BSU) def. Ruben Gonzales (UI), 6-4, 6-2
2. Ryan Rowe (UI) def. Clancy Shields (BSU), 6-4, 6-4
3. Billy Heiser (UI) def. Brent Werbeck (BSU), 6-3, 6-4
4. Piotr Dilaj (BSU) def. Marc Spicijaric (UI), 1-6, 6-3, 6-1
5. Waylon Chin (UI) def. Steve Robertson (BSU), 6-2, 4-6, 7-6 (2)
6. Paul Koenke (BSU) def. Abe Souza (UI), 6-3, 6-4
Order of finish (singles): 6, 3, 1, 2, 4, 5