LOGAN, Utah – Sam Tullis boosted BYU men’s tennis to a 4-3 win over Utah State on Thursday night.
“Utah State is a very good team,” BYU head coach Brad Pearce said. “They are well-coached and they are great fighters, so it’s always a dog fight when we play, home or away. It was looking good for us, then it was looking bad for us, but our guys just didn’t quit and Matthew [Pearce] and Sam stepped up and played lights out in their third sets with Sam providing the clinching win after great doubles at every position and another stellar performance by Sean [Hill]. I’m proud of every member of this team; they all gave it everything they had both on the court and off.”
BYU (5-2) came out ready to play and claimed the doubles point over Utah State (4-3). Teammates Tullis and Ben Gajardo earned a 6-3 win in No. 2 doubles over USU’s Duro Opacic and Isaac Arturo Arevalo and BYU duo Mateo Vereau Melendez and Pearce followed with a 6-3 victory over Mitch Johnson and Felipe Acosta in the No. 3 spot.
Hill claimed the first singles point for the Cougars as he defeated Arevalo 6-4, 6-1, in the No. 1 spot.
With BYU up 2-0, the Aggies came back with three straight singles wins to put the score at 3-2. The No. 3 slot finished first with Acosta topping Vereau 1-6, 6-1, 6-1. Sergiu Bucur followed at No. 2 singles with the close 3-6, 6-2, 6-2 win over Jeffrey Hsu and Bollipalli earned the last Aggie point in No. 5 singles by defeating Gajardo 7-5, 7-5.
Down a point, the Cougars came back and won the last two singles matches. Pearce claimed a point when he defeated Johnson 6-1, 3-6, 6-1 in No. 6 singles. BYU secured its 4-3 match victory when Tullis ousted Opacic 6-7, 6-3, 6-1 in No. 4 singles.
The Cougars’ next match against UCLA has been postponed due to weather conditions. BYU will begin conference play at home against Santa Clara on Feb. 9 at 5 p.m. MDT.
BYU 4, USU 3
- Rithvik Bollipalli/Sergiu Bucur (USU) vs. #19 Sean Hill/Jeffrey Hsu (BYU) 4-4, unfinished
- Jacob Tullis/Ben Gajardo (BYU) def. Duro Opacic/Isaac Arturo Arevalo (USU) 6-3
- Mateo Vereau/Matthew Pearce (BYU) def. Mitch Johnson/Felipe Acosta (USU) 6-3
Order of finish: (2, 3)
- Sean Hill (BYU) def. Isaac Arturo Arevalo (USU) 6-4, 6-1
- Sergiu Bucur (USU) def. Jeffrey Hsu (BYU) 3-6, 6-2, 6-2
- Felipe Acosta (USU) def. Mateo Vereau (BYU) 1-6, 6-1, 6-1
- Sam Tullis (BYU) def. Duro Opacic (USU) 6-7 (7-9), 6-3, 6-1
- Rithvik Bollipalli (USU) def. Ben Gajardo (BYU) 7-5, 7-5
- Matthew Pearce (BYU) def. Mitch Johnson (USU) 6-1, 3-6, 6-1
Order of finish: (1, 3, 2, 5, 6, 4)
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