PROVO -- The sixty-third ranked BYU men's tennis team began conference play by beating in-state rival Utah 4-3 on Thursday. With the win, the Cougars improve to 8-9 overall and 1-0 in MWC play while the Utes drop to 7-9 overall and 0-1 in the conference.
"This was a typical BYU/Utah match," said BYU head coach Jim Osborne. "It was a fight to the finish. We were really lucky to win."
The Utes came out ready for the Cougars and captured the doubles point by winning two of the three matches. Carlos Lozano and Erik Nyman, the eighteenth ranked doubles team in the nation, were the only Cougars to win in doubles. They beat Roeland Brateanu and Nick Coutts 8-3. The other two doubles matches ended 9-7, but Utah came out victorious in both.
In singles, the Cougars captured wins in the first three singles positions and in the last spot to edge out the Utes. Nyman led the way for BYU by beating Daniel Lohff 6-3, 7-6 at the No. 1 spot. Lozano was down a break in the third set to Brateanu at No. 2, but was able to fight back and beat him 4-6, 6-4, 7-5. Jose Lechuga easily defeated Tyler Poulson 6-1, 6-3 at the No. 3 spot and Anton Rudjuk beat Kaisorn Chaichana 6-3, 7-6 at No. 6.
"It's nice to get this first conference win, even though our team didn't play its best," said BYU head coach Jim Osborne. "We need to be playing a lot better at this stage of the game. We need to step it up, especially tomorrow with San Diego State coming to town."
The Cougars have two more conference matches at home this weekend with thirty-fourth ranked San Diego State on Friday and UNLV on Saturday. Both matches will begin at 2 p.m. and will be played indoors.
1. No. 18 Lozano/Nyman (BYU) def. Brateanu/Coutts (UU) 8-3
2. Poulson/Grzyb (UU) def. Lechuga/Rudjuk (BYU) 9-7
3. Chaichana/Lohff (UU) def. Medina/Olsen (UU) 9-7
Utah wins the doubles' point, 2-1
1. Erik Nyman (BYU) def. Daniel Lohff (UU) 6-3, 7-6
2. Carlos Lozano (BYU) def. Roeland Brateanu (UU) 4-6, 6-4, 7-5
3. Jose Lechuga (BYU) def. Tyler Poulson (UU) 6-1, 6-3
4. Tomasz Grzyb (UU) def. Jeff Olsen (BYU) 7-6, 7-6
5. Nick Coutts (UU) def. Alonso Medina (BYU) 7-6, 7-5
6. Anton Rudjuk (BYU) def. Kaisorn Chaichana (UU) 6-3, 7-6
No. 63 BYU def. Utah, 4-3