Men's Tennis Falters in First Conference Match
SALT LAKE -- In its conference opener against No. 50 TCU, the BYU men’s tennis team dropped a 5-2 result at the Eccles Tennis Center. The Cougars fell to 12-9 on the season and 0-1 against Mountain West opponents.
The Horned Frogs won the doubles point after a victory on court one by the No. 31 tandem in the country. At the No. 2 position, sophomores Daniel Hwang and Thomas Shubert pushed the No. 20 pair but eventually fell 8-6. The Cougars were able to record one victory, an 8-6 win on court three by Cassidy Mears and Evan Urbina.
“We did a good job at No. 3 doubles,” BYU coach Brad Pearce said. “We had multiple opportunities at No. 2 and we were unable to capitalize on them.”
TCU’s Kriegler Brink started off scoring in singles with a straight-set win on court three. A clash of freshmen at the No. 1 position ended in another Horned Frog win after No. 62 Slah Mbarek defeated Roman Warias. TCU secured the victory after taking matches on courts five and six.
Notching wins for the Cougars were Shubert and Mears, at the No. 2 and No. 4 positions respectively.
“It’s obvious where guys stepped up today,” Pearce said.
The team will continue conference play Friday against No. 54 Utah and Saturday against No. 65 UNLV. Pearce said the team is looking forward to competing with its in-state rival.
“We’re hoping to get a great performance at every position Friday,” Pearce said.
Friday’s match begins at 1 p.m. at the Liberty Park Tennis Center depending on weather. In the event of inclement weather, matches will be played at the Eccles Tennis Center.
No. 50 TCU- 5
1. #31 Kriegler Brink/Slah Mbarek (TCU) def. Roman Warias/Georgy Batrakov (BYU), 8-4
2. #20 Emanuel Brighiu/Adrian Simon (TCU) def. Thomas Shubert/Daniel Hwang (BYU), 8-6
3. Cassidy Mears/Evan Urbina (BYU) def. Zach Nichols/Christopher Price (TCU), 8-6
1. #62 Slah Mbarek (TCU) def. Roman Warias (BYU), 6-1, 6-4
2. Thomas Shubert (BYU) def. #110 Emanuel Brighiu (TCU), 7-5, 6-3
3. #76 Kriegler Brink (TCU) def. Evan Urbina (BYU), 6-1, 6-1
4. Cassidy Mears (BYU) def. Zach Nichols (TCU), 6-4, 6-0
5. Christopher Price (TCU) def. Georgy Batrakov (BYU), 6-4, 6-4
6. Casey Powers (TCU) def. Daniel Hwang (BYU), 6-4, 7-6(0)
BYU Heads North to Begin Conference Play
PROVO -- A weekend of stiff competition with conference opponents awaits the No. 63 BYU men’s tennis team in Salt Lake City. The 12-8 Cougars will face No. 48 TCU, No. 62 Utah and No. 65 UNLV.
“We play three good schools,” BYU coach Brad Pearce said. “We’re poised and ready after last weekend’s matches to play with confidence.”
Conference champion TCU will be the first hurdle for BYU. The Horned Frogs own a 6-9 record on the season with their last results being a 7-0 win over Columbia. Their two ranked doubles teams have broken the top 30 and currently sit at No. 21 and No. 28. TCU also has three singles players in the ranking mix.
The teams met twice last year, once in the regular season and once at the conference tournament. The Horned Frogs bested the Cougars in both matches.
“We were a younger team last year,” Pearce said. “This year we have more experience and better know what to expect in these tough conference matches.”
BYU will turn its attention to in-state rival Utah Friday. The 12-6 Utes defeated Loyola Marymount, 6-1, in their last outing. Utah has one pair ranked in the top 75. Last season, the Cougars were unable to overcome the Utes, dropping a 4-3 match at home.
The team will close out the weekend against UNLV. The Rebels are 12-8 on the season and 1-1 in conference play after sweeping Air Force but falling 5-2 to No. 34 New Mexico. BYU lost a close 4-3 match to UNLV in the regular season before upsetting them 4-2 in the first round of the conference tournament last year.
“They are all good teams so we’re just taking it one match at a time,” Pearce said.
Thursday’s match against TCU begins at 9 a.m. The match Friday starts at 1 p.m. and play versus UNLV is set for 9 a.m. Saturday. All matches will be played at the Liberty Park Tennis Center, weather pending. If inclement weather occurs, matches will be moved indoors to the Eccles Tennis Center.