MEN’S TENNIS BESTED BY NO. 25 TEXAS A&M, 5-2
The Red Raiders renewed their rivalry with Texas A&M in dual match play for the first time since 2012.
COLLEGE STATION, Texas – The Texas Tech men’s tennis team had its two-match winning streak come to close during a 5-2 setback versus No. 25 Texas A&M on Sunday at the Mitchell Tennis Center.
The Red Raiders have dropped three road matches to SEC opponents this season. It marked the first dual matchup between Texas Tech (4-6) and Texas A&M (2-3) since the 2012 season, a 4-3 Red Raider win, when both programs were members of the Big 12 Conference.
Connor Curry and Bjorn Thomson provided the bright spots for Texas Tech with a singles and a doubles win. Curry grinded out a 6-3, 6-4 win over A.J. Catanzarit on court two. He had a strong finishing kick and won the last three games to reverse a 4-3 deficit in set two.
Thomson used the same formula against Max Lunkin on the No. 3 singles line. He dropped a 6-1 first set but fired back with a 6-1 win of his own in set two. Thomson faced a 3-1 deficit in the winner-take-all third set but reeled off five consecutive games to collect the 1-6, 6-1, 6-3 comeback win.
“It was a really good day for Connor and Bjorn,” Texas Tech head coach Brett Masi said. “Unfortunately, we couldn’t have them playing for us on every court. We just didn’t battle today across the board and make Texas A&M have to work. We got 15 games over the four courts we lost on. That’s just not acceptable and not how you compete if you are a Red Raider. This match is definitely going to leave a bad taste in our mouths while we have to wait a couple of weeks before we can play again.”
Texas A&M started quickly in doubles behind a 6-0 triumph from Arthur Rinderknech and Valentin Vacherot over Ronit Bisht and Alex Sendegeya at the No. 2 spot.
Curry and Thomson kept the doubles point battle alive for the Red Raiders and rattled off the final three games to top Aleksandre Bakshi and Catanzarit 6-3 on court one.
The Aggies captured the doubles point courtesy of a late service break at the No. 3 position when Jordi Arconada and Lunkin edged out Jolan Cailleau and Carlos DiLaura by a 7-5 margin.
Texas A&M clinched the match on the strength of straight-set wins from the bottom of its lineup. Bakshi dismissed Sendegeya by a 6-3, 6-1 decision, Arconada picked up a 6-2, 6-1 win over Bisht and Vacherot upended DiLaura by a 6-3, 6-0 score line.
In a matchup of Top 60 players on court one, No. 14 Rinderknech defeated No. 59 Cailleau in a 6-1, 6-4 affair to push the Aggies advantage to 5-0.
Texas Tech will have a bye week and return to action at the prestigious Blue Gray National Tennis Classic in Montgomery, Alabama from Feb. 24-25. The Red Raiders will be joined by Alabama, Auburn, Boise State, Princeton, Rice, South Carolina and Virginia Tech in the eight-team field with the matchups being determined by ITA rankings.
No. 25 Texas A&M 5, Texas Tech 2
February 12, 2017 – Mitchell Tennis Center (College Station, Texas)
1 – No. 14 Arthur Rinderknech (A&M) defeats No. 59 Jolan Cailleau (TTU): 6-1, 6-4
2 – Connor Curry (TTU) defeats A.J. Catanzarit (A&M): 6-3, 6-4
3 – Bjorn Thomson (TTU) defeats Max Lunkin (A&M): 1-6, 6-1, 6-3
4 – Aleksandre Bakshi (A&M) defeats Alex Sendegeya (TTU): 6-3, 6-1
5 – Jordi Arconada (A&M) defeats Ronit Bisht (TTU): 6-2, 6-1
6 – Valentin Vacherot (A&M) defeats Carlos DiLaura (TTU): 6-3, 6-0
Order of Finish: 6, 5, 4, 1, 2, 3
1 – Connor Curry/Bjorn Thomson (TTU) defeats Aleksandre Bakshi/A.J. Catanzarit (A&M): 6-3
2 – Arthur Rinderknech/Valentin Vacherot (A&M) defeats Ronit Bisht/Alex Sendegeya (TTU): 6-0
3 – Jordi Arconada/Max Lunkin (A&M) defeats Jolan Cailleau/Carlos DiLaura (TTU): 7-5
Order of Finish: 2, 1, 3
Texas Tech (4-6)
Texas A&M (2-3); National Ranking: No. 25