SALT LAKE CITY – The No. 52 BYU men’s tennis team topped Utah, 5-2, Wednesday at Eccles Tennis Center to clinch the overall 2011-12 Deseret First Duel title once more for the Cougars.
"Clinching the Deseret First Duel was icing on the cake," BYU coach Brad Pearce said. "It's always great to be in a position to do something for all our teams. That was exciting for us."
With three points on the line, the win puts BYU ahead of Utah 28-13. This year marks the Cougars third consecutive title.
The BYU men's tennis team (4-5) kicked off the match winning the doubles point. Junior Spencer Smith and freshman Francis Sargeant made quick of their Court 2 opponent, topping Dmytro Mamedov and Ace Matias, 8-1. The BYU duo is on a five-game win streak with a 14-6 overall record.
"We had prepared and worked hard for this match," Pearce said. "I was especially pleased to win the doubles point so decisively with wins at the No. 1 and No. 2 position. I think it gave us a good start."
In singles, Lane brought the score to 1-1 after topping Eraso on Court 6, 6-3, 6-2.
Singles wins by Sargeant and No. 106 Kawka put the Cougars in position to take the match before No. 67 Cullimore secured the win on Court 4, defeating Matias, 6-2, 7-5.
No. 43 Batrakov, playing at the No. 1 position, dropped his first set to Suriano before holding him to only three games in the next two sets, topping Suriano, 4-6, 6-1, 6-2.
Utah’s second point came on Court 2 where Smith dropped a close 6-4, 4-6, 10-4 decision to Mamedov.
"It was a great team effort tonight," Pearce said. "I was really thrilled, especially with the way our freshmen stepped up. We've really worked hard in preparing for this match. It will be a good lesson for the team to see that hard work does pay off."
The Deseret First Duel, established in 2007, was created as a celebration of one of the nation’s oldest and most spirited college rivalries.
The Cougars return home to host Nevada Friday at 5:30 p.m. at the BYU Indoor Tennis Courts.
Pizza and prizes will be provided. Spectators may park in the “Y Lot” parking lots to the northwest and southwest of the courts anytime after 4 p.m. Admission is free.
BYU – 5
University of Utah – 2
1. #43 Georgy Batrakov (BYU) def. Benito Suriano (UTAH) 4-6, 6-1, 6-2
2. Dmytro Mamedov (UTAH) def. Spencer Smith (BYU) 6-4, 4-6, 10-4
3. #106 Patrick Kawka (BYU) def. Slim Hamza (UTAH) 6-3, 7-5
4. #67 Keaton Cullimore (BYU) def. Ace Matias (UTAH) 6-2, 7-5
5. Francis Sargeant (BYU) def. Ben Tasevac (UTAH) 6-1, 6-4
6. Devin Lane (UTAH) def. Michael Eraso (BYU) 6-3, 6-2
1. Georgy Batrakov/Patrick Kawka (BYU) def. Benito Suriano/Alejandro Medinilla (UTAH) 8-0
2. Spencer Smith/Francis Sargeant (BYU) def. Dmytro Mamedov/Ace Matias (UTAH) 8-1
3. Devin Lane/Slim Hamza (UTAH) def. Keaton Cullimore/Michael Eraso (BYU) 8-4
BYU (4-5); National ranking: 52
University of Utah (4-1)
Order of finish: Doubles (2, 3, 1); Singles (6, 5, 3, 4, 1, 2)
Cougars in Deseret Dual before hosting Nevada
PROVO, Utah – Looking for its first road win of the season, the No. 52 BYU men’s tennis team travels to Salt Lake City for the Deseret Dual with instate rival University of Utah on Wednesday before returning home to host Nevada, Friday.
“I think our guys will come in confident, which they should,” BYU coach Brad Pearce said. “We love rivalry matches. It’s something to get exited about, above and beyond your every day matches. It’s important to us. We have two tough matches this week; Nevada is a good team. I’m feeling pretty good about our preparation though.”
The Cougars (3-4) challenge the undefeated Utes (4-0) Wednesday at the Eccles Tennis Center at 5 p.m. BYU currently leads the 2011-12 Deseret Dual, 25-13.
The Utes are coming off a week-long break following a 7-0 sweep over Idaho State. The Cougars look to bounce back after dropping a 5-2 decision at No. 9 Stanford. A bright spot to the loss came on Court 2 where Kawka upset No. 75 Matt Kandath, 7-6, 2-6, 7-6(3). Kawka is 5-2 in dual matches this season.
The last meeting between the rivals was in April of 2011 when BYU routed Utah, 6-1. Utah leads the all-time series with 57 wins to BYU’s 47.
Utah and BYU have each faced Weber State, Idaho State and Montana State, defeating them by the same scores of 7-0, 7-0, and 6-1, respectively.
Following the rivalry match, the Cougars return home to host Nevada at the BYU Indoor Tennis Courts Friday.
The Wolf Pack (3-3) is coming off a 6-1 loss to No. 33 Fresno State.
The last meeting between the two teams came in Feb 2011 when BYU swept Nevada, 7-0. The Cougars are 7-1 in the series against the Wolf Pack.
The match kicks off at 5:30 p.m. Pizza and prizes will be provided. Spectators may park in the “Y Lot” parking lots to the northwest and southwest of the courts anytime after 4 p.m. Admission is free.