Stanford takes 2 more tennis titles

ATHENS, Ga. -- The tennis trophy room at Stanford University, already crowded with the hardware from dozens of champions, will have to make room for more.

Bradley Klahn of the Cardinal won the NCAA men's singles title Monday at the University of Georgia, and his teammates, Hilary Barte and Lindsay Burdette, won the women's doubles crown.

"This feels incredible," said Klahn, who defeated unseeded Austen Childs of Louisville 6-1, 6-2. "All the people who have won it I was trying to block that out."

Klahn became the 14th Cardinal to claim the men's singles title, the first since Alex Kim in 2000.

"The wins speak for themselves," said Burdette of Stanford's status in college tennis. "This feels great, but it reminds us of how hard all those teams that dominated had to work."

Burdette and Barte defeated Tennessee's top-seeded Natalie Ploskova and Caitlin Whoriskey 7-5, 4-6, 6-0 to become the sixth Stanford duo to win the women's doubles.

Included among those winners was Lindsay's older sister. Erin, who teamed with Alice Barnes to win the 2005 title, also in Athens, 90 minutes northeast of the Burdette's hometown of Jackson, Ga.

Stanford also won the women's team title last week.

The hometown crowd was delighted by Chelsea Gullickson's championship in the singles final. Gullickson beat second-seeded Jana Juricova 6-3, 7-6 (7) to become the third women's champ from Georgia.

"I struggled a lot this year," said Gullickson, who finished the year 30-8. "I had my ups and downs, but I pulled it out in the end. The crowd was awesome, I just pushed my nerves aside."

Gullickson said she has given no thought to joining her older sister, Carly, on the professional circuit. Both she and Klahn were hopeful of wild-card draws into the U.S. Open.

Virginia's unseeded Drew Courtney and Michael Shabaz won the men's doubles title with a 6-7 (4), 6-2, 6-3 over Tennessee's No. 2 seeds Davy Sandgren and John-Patrick Smith. It was the second straight doubles title for Shabaz, who teamed with Dominic Inglot last year.

"We were serving for the first set, and I saw Michael double-fault the game away," Virginia coach Brian Boland. "I have never seen that before.

"I thought if we managed to pull out the first set, it would be OK," Shabaz said. "But the hole was a little bit deeper. It was the championship finals. We still felt like we won the first set even though we lost it."

Childs had a strong cheering section, many from other Cardinals' sports teams, but he could never mount a charge.

"He ran into a guy who has been playing really well the whole year," said Stanford Coach John Whitlinger, himself a singles champion for Stanford in 1974. "It is a privilege to coach Bradley. He is one of the great kids in college sports."

Childs held serve only once in the first set and had to fight through nine deuce points to win his serve in the first game of the second set.

"I know I can play with anyone if I go out and compete hard," Childs said.