Junior Alonso Medina won a decisive match for the Cougars on Saturday against fifty-fifth ranked New Mexico. Medina came from behind to win at the No. 5 spot and clinch the victory for the Cougars. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)
COLORADO SPRINGS -- In a come-from-behind victory, the No. 68 BYU men's tennis team beat the fifty-fifth ranked Lobos of New Mexico 4-3 on Saturday and claimed a share of the regular-season Mountain West Conference Championship. The Cougars share the title with UNM and No. 35 San Diego State.
"This was a great win for us," said BYU head coach Jim Osborne. "We knew coming in to this match that the only way we could get a share of the regular-season title would be to beat New Mexico. I am just so proud of our guys and the way they played."
The Cougars started the match off slow and lost the doubles point to the Lobos. Jose Lechuga and Anton Rudjuk were the only Cougars to win in doubles, which they did by beating Bart Scott and Jasmin Hodzic 9-7 at the No. 2 spot.
But in singles, BYU came out ready and focused on UNM. Erik Nyman, Carlos Lozano and Jose Lechuga all won at the top three spots, but the match came down to the No. 5 spot. Alonso Medina won the first set 6-4 and then proceeded to lose the second to Henry Gers 3-6. In the third and final set, Medina was down 5-2 but fought back to get it to 5-4. Gers had match point at 5-4, but Medina held him off and won the third set 7-6 in a tiebreaker, clinching the victory for the Cougars.
"Alonso (Medina) really stepped up for us today," said Osborne. "I am glad to see that we can fight back when we are down. We are playing really good right now, which is great with the conference tournament coming up in two weeks."
Before the match, UNM was the only remaining unbeaten team in MWC play.
With the regular season finished, the Cougars will have next week to prepare for the MWC tournament, which will be held in Provo beginning on April 24 and going through the 26.
No. 68 BYU def. No. 55 New Mexico, 4-3
1. Erik Nyman (BYU) def. Bart Scott (UNM) 6-3, 6-3
2. Carlos Lozano (BYU) def. Divan Coetzee (UNM) 7-6, 6-7, 6-3
3. Jose Lechuga (BYU) def. David Kowalski (UNM) 6-4, 6-3
4. Brent Salazar (UNM) def. Jeff Olsen (BYU) 6-4, 6-3
5. Alonso Medina (BYU) def. Henry Gers (UNM) 6-4, 3-6, 7-6
6. Jasmin Hodzic (UNM) def. Anton Rudjuk (BYU) 5-7, 6-3, 6-1
1. Ryan Stotland/Salazar (UNM) def. Lozano/Nyman (BYU) 8-4
2. Lechuga/Rudjuk (BYU) def. Scott/Hoczic (UNM) 9-7
3. Coetzee/Kowalski (UNM) def. Medina/Olsen (BYU) 8-6