PROVO -- The No. 45 BYU men’s tennis team earned its 10th win of the season Friday against the University of San Francisco. The Cougars defeated the Dons 6-1 to improve their record to 10-1.
“Having 10 wins this early in the season is a great tribute to the guys,” BYU coach Brad Pearce said. “Their hard work and effort started in the fall.”
In pairs play, a similar story unfolded on all three courts. As the Cougars settled in, they got ahead in each of the matches, but the Dons would not back down. Cassidy Mears and Thomas Shubert were the first doubles team to record a win. On the remaining courts, BYU led 7-5. At both the Nos. 2 and 3 positions, USF was allowed one more game before being defeated 8-6 and the Cougars went into the break up by one.
“We’ve been fortunate to get some close wins early in the season and our confidence is growing,” Pearce said. “The guys expect to win and that’s a good thing.”
BYU’s momentum continued in singles play with the Cougars easily winning three matches to earn their 10th win of the season. Evan Urbina, Georgy Batrakov and Mears each handily defeated their respective opponents in straight sets to secure the four points necessary for the victory.
San Francisco’s only win of the match came at the No. 1 position where Thai Tu defeated Shubert 7-5, 6-3. Smith and Hwang closed out the contest, notching two more singles wins for the Cougars to secure the 6-1 decision.
“It was good to get a match under our belts in preparation for a good Boise State team,” Pearce said.
Saturday BYU will challenge No. 29 Boise State at 5: 30 p.m. The match will be at the BYU Indoor Tennis Courts located south of the Smith Fieldhouse. Admission is free and the team will provide pizza and prizes for fans. All BYU “Y Lot” parking lots are open to the public all day Saturday.
No. 45 BYU-6
1. Mears/Shubert (BYU) def. Cohen/Tu (USF) 8-4
2. Smith/Urbina (BYU) def. Nachbauer/Schumacher (USF) 8-6
3. Batrakov/Hwang (BYU) def. DeCastro/Hart (USF) 8-6
Order of Finish: 1, 3, 2
1. T. Tu (USF) def. No. 98 T. Shubert (BYU) 7-5, 6-3
2. E. Urbina (BYU) def. R. Nachbauer (USF) 6-3, 6-2
3. C. Mears (BYU) def. A. Cohen (USF) 6-4, 6-2
4. G. Batrakov (BYU) def. O. Bakke (USF) 6-3, 6-2
5. S. Smith (BYU) def. M. DeCastro (USF) 6-2, 6-2
6. D. Hwang (BYU) def. J. Hartwig (USF) 6-1, 6-3
Order of Finish: 2, 4, 3, 1, 5, 6
PROVO -- In what is sure to be an exciting weekend of tennis, the No. 45 BYU men’s tennis team will face the University of San Francisco and regional rival No. 29 Boise State. The Cougars take on the Dons Friday evening and the Broncos Saturday evening.
“There’s no magic formula,” BYU coach Brad Pearce said. “We’re simply sticking with the routines we’ve adopted in preparation for our matches so far this season.”
Despite their first loss of the season last week against No. 24 Arizona, the Cougars recovered with a 5-2 win over South Alabama. BYU continues to move up in the rankings, coming in at the No. 45 spot this week. The ranking is the highest for the program since 2001.
BYU has defeated San Francisco in the two previous meetings between these teams. The last contest resulted in a 5-2 Cougar win in the 2006-2007 season. The Dons are currently 4-3 on the season and overcame UC Davis in their last match.
“San Francisco is a quality team and a good program,” Pearce said. “And Boise State is a big regional rivalry. It is a good team that is well-coached.”
Boise State will take on another local rival, No. 70 Utah, Friday before heading to Provo. The Broncos are 3-3 on the season and lost to then-No. 8 Stanford last week. BYU leads the all-time record 16-13 but has not beaten BSU since 2002. The Cougars suffered a close 4-3 loss in Boise, Idaho last season. Players from both squads competed in various tournaments throughout the fall including the Utah Fall Tennis Classic, the Boise State Classic, the Utah Intercollegiate Tournament and the ITA Mountain Region Championship.
“We feel confident going into the matches,” Pearce said. “But we know that we have to play with great heart and intensity and really go after it to come away with two victories this weekend.”
Both matches begin at 5: 30 p.m. at the BYU Indoor Tennis Courts. Admission is free and the courts are located south of the Smith Fieldhouse. The team will provide pizza and prizes to fans. All BYU “Y Lot” parking lots are open to the public after 4 p.m. Friday and all day Saturday.