ATHENS, Ga. – Oskar Johansson’s singles season came to an end Thursday when the Arkansas senior was eliminated in the first round of the NCAA tennis tournament at the University of Georgia. Johansson and fellow senior teammate Henrik Tofft begin play in the doubles tournament Friday. Johansson, currently ranked fourth in the nation by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association and the No. 6 seed in the tournament, dropped a 5-7, 6-4, 6-2 decision to No. 51 Jean-Noel Grinda of UCLA to end his season at 28-11. “Oskar ran into a hard-serving Bruin in this round,” UA head coach Robert Cox said. “He is one of the best left-handed servers in the country and he was hard to handle. OJ won the first set, but the guy kept serving himself out of trouble. He competed hard and we’re proud of the year he had and of his career.” Johansson, who helped the Razorbacks go 16-10 and reach the second round of the NCAA Tournament, earned All-America honors for the second time by being one of the top 16 seeds. Ranked No. 1 in the nation most of the year, he will also end the year ranked among the top 20, which also ensures All-America status. Johansson ended his singles career with an 87-46 record, All-America honors in 2000 and 2001, All-Southeastern Conference honors in 1999, 2000 and 2001, and tournament titles this year at the ITA National Clay Court Championships and the River Oaks Intercollegiate. “Oskar has meant a lot to the Arkansas tennis program and another chapter concludes,” Cox said. “I am sad that we will no longer have OJ on the singles courts.
“There’s no pressure in doubles. We will just have fun and compete.” Johansson and Tofft play doubles Friday against Southern California’s Ryan Moore and Nick Rainey. Johansson and Tofft (11-4) are ranked No. 26 nationally. Moore and Rainey, who advanced to last year’s finals, are ranked No. 11.