The Ventura College men's tennis team used some teamwork to advance to the Southern California semifinals Tuesday afternoon.
Despite dropping the top two singles matches, the undefeated Pirates used their depth to subdue visiting San Diego Mesa, 5-2, in the Southern California dual team playoffs.
"That is our strength," said Ventura coach Nelson Emery. "We're not real top heavy."
Alexandre Piccin, Thomas Millet, Romain Scipione and Pedro Arteaga combined to drop just nine games in sweeping their matches at No. 3, No. 4, No. 5 and No. 6 singles, respectively.
"From 3 on down we beat them up pretty good," Emery said.
The doubles tandem of twin brothers Juan and Pedro Arteaga clinched the win by sweeping their match, 6-2, 6-0 while the other two VC doubles teams led their matches after the Pirates clinched the overall victory.
Thousand Oaks High product Rob Diamond was forced to retire in the third set at No. 1 singles, trailing 6-4, 5-7, 1-3, because of cramps.
"That was weird," said Emery. "That's the one guy on our team who can run forever. He's probably the most fit guy on our team."
Ventura (15-0) will host either No. 4 Mount San Jacinto or No. 5 Riverside on Tuesday in the SoCal semifinals.
"Next week is a different beast," said Emery. "That's going to be a big match."