Johansson Places Second at Rolex Invitational
BY ANDRES FOCIL
FORT WORTH, Texas – Arkansas junior Oskar Johansson came just short of claiming his second-individual tournament title at the Rolex Invitational, Monday morning.
Ranked 35th in the nation, Johansson played the number three seed and nationally 12th ranked Shaun Madden of Texas A&M. Madden won the match 6-3, 6-4.
“It was a great match and I was very proud of the way that Oskar played,” Arkansas head coach Robert Cox said. “It was probably the best I’ve seen him play in his two and a half years at Arkansas. Oskar really stepped up in this tournament. He should be ranked in the top 20 with this performance.”
The Rolex Invitational hosted a draw of 128 players from Division I schools in Texas, Arkansas and Louisiana. Johansson won five matches to make it to the finals.
With his play into the finals of the Rolex Invitational, Johansson qualified for the Rolex Indoor Championships. Taking place in February, the indoor championships will host the top two players from each of the eight regions. The Rolex Indoor Championship is the third leg of the collegiate grand slam series.
“As far as singles players go in my tenure here, Oskar is up there with Marcus Hilpert and Mike Brown,” Cox said. “He has started to establish himself on a national level. It’s crucial for a team to have a top flight singles player and we have that in Oskar.”
The Rolex Invitational marked the final tournament of the fall season for the Hogs. The season was highlighted with a lot of individual success. Johansson won his first collegiate title at the Arizona State Invitational. He defeated Peter Luczak of Fresno State in the championship finals 6-7, 6-4, 6-1.
Henrik Tofft had a 7-3 singles tournament record for the fall and was able to advance to the round of 32 in Rolex Invitational. Magnus Kullenberg, a sophomore, had a 9-3 singles record and advanced to the semifinals of the Tulane Invitational.
“We has a good fall,” Cox said. “It was a lot better than last fall. Tofft and Kullenberg really made some strides this fall. I’m looking forward to see what we can do this spring.”
The 2000 tennis season will begin Jan. 14-16 with the Alumni Weekend in Fayetteville, Ark.
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