Georgy Batrakov won the match for BYU with a straight-set victory on Court 2. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)
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PROVO -- Junior Georgy Batrakov’s straight-set singles win stole the victory against No. 48 Denver for the No. 57 BYU men’s tennis team Friday. The 7-0 win was BYU's fourth against the Pioneers in five years.
"If somebody had told me we'd sweep Denver, I'd have said they were dreaming," BYU head coach Brad Pearce said. "Our matches are 4-3 almost every year. Denver is a great team. We're going to use this to prepare for our matches on the road next week. I think this shows we're a tough team to deal with."
Batrakov started strong on Court 2 with a 4-0 run in the first set. His opponent, Denver’s Andrew Landwerlen, cut off his run, but Batrakov pushed ahead to take the set 6-3. Batrakov slipped away with another win in the second set 6-4 to seize a Cougar victory.
Leading up to Batrakov’s win, Thomas Shubert put up BYU’s first singles point with a 6-4, 6-0 win against Alex Clinkenbeard. He was followed by Patrick Kawka’s 6-4, 6-2 defeat of Jonathan Kidane.
Team captain Evan Urbina fought a tough battle against Yannick Weihs, winning the first set 6-4 but dropping the second to Denver 3-6. Urbina came out conqueror with a 7-5 win in the third to take the match.
Michael Eraso took his 6-2, 6-7 match against Angel Alvarez to a tie breaker, defeating his opponent 10-6. Roman Warias finished up the clean sweep with a 7-5, 6-4 win against Varun Gunaseelan.
On the doubles side, Batrakov and Shubert punched out a quick 8-3 victory against Clinkenbeard and Landwerlen on Court 2. Tyler Loong and Warias finished second against Denver’s Alvarez and Gunaseelan 8-5, taking the doubles point for BYU.
Despite going behind three games, Kawka and Urbina rallied on Court 1, winning five games straight to take the lead over Weihs and Kidane. The Pioneers pushed on to tie the match 6-6, but Kawka and Urbina surged ahead for the 8-6 win.
"I was really proud of Evan and Patrick," Pearce said. "They were down 3-0 and didn't panic. They were confident they could get back in the match, and they did."
The Cougars (6-4) are still undefeated at home with a 5-0 record.
Up next on the schedule, the Cougars will play in the H.E.B. Invitational Friday and Saturday in Corpus Christi, Texas.
No. 57 BYU vs. No. 48 Denver
1. Kawka/Urbina (BYU) def. Kidane/Weihs (UD) 8-6
2. Batrakov/Shubert (BYU) def. Clinkenbeard/Landwerlen (UD) 8-3
3. Loong/Warias (BYU) def. Alvarez/Gunaseelan (UD) 8-5
Order of finish: 2, 3, 1
1. Evan Urbina (BYU) def. Yannick Weihs (UD) 6-4, 3-6, 7-5
2. Georgy Batrakov (BYU) def. Andrew Landwerlen (UD) 6-3, 6-4
3. Patrick Kawka (BYU) def. Jonathan Kidane (UD) 6-4, 6-2
4. Thomas Shubert (BYU) def. Alex Clinkenbeard (UD) 6-4, 6-0
5. Roman Warias (BYU) def. Varun Gunaseelan (UD) 7-5, 6-4
6. Michael Eraso (BYU) def. Angel Alvarez (UD) 6-2, 6-7, (10-6)
Order of finish: 4, 3, 2, 1, 6, 5