Cougars face two ranked opponents

Junior Francis Sargeant is leading the team with an 11-1 singles record in 2014. (Photo by BYU Photo/Jaren Wilkey)
PROVO, Utah -- The BYU men’s tennis team is gearing up for matches against ranked opponents No. 56 New Mexico Friday at 1 p.m. MST and No. 41 Texas Tech Saturday at 11 a.m. at the Linda Estes Tennis Center in Albuquerque, N.M.
 
Coming off a confidence-building 7-0 sweep of Idaho last weekend, the Cougars (6-7) look to finish strong in these two matches before opening up West Coast Conference play.
 
“We have a great rivalry with New Mexico as a regional competitor,” BYU head coach Brad Pearce said. “We call it a friendly rivalry because I think we respect each other’s programs and have a great relationship with their coaching staff. It’s a good opportunity for us, they’re always a good team.”
 
The Cougars are 33-20 all-time against the former Mountain West Conference opponent and current regional foe Lobos, who enter the match 13-4 on the season.
Against the Red Raiders, BYU is 2-4 all-time with the last meeting in 2010 resulting in a 4-1 loss.
 
“Texas Tech is always a good team year to year,” coach Pearce said. “We think it’s a great trip, a great opportunity for us at this stage. I think we’re becoming a little more dangerous.”
 
In the match against Idaho, five out of the seven BYU players who competed were freshmen while five of six singles matches were won in two sets.
 
After the two matches this weekend, BYU travels to California for WCC play against Pacific and Saint Mary’s, March 21 and March 22, respectively.