The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Men’s tennis team looks to keep momentum

The Texas A&M men’s tennis team is not short on confidence after defeating Texas 4-3 in the final match of the Big 12 regular season.
“We know that there isn’t a team out there that we can’t beat if we execute well and play to our ability,” senior Conor Pollock said. “We have a great opportunity to do well, but we have to take it one match at a time.”
The Aggies will join the Longhorns and the other Big 12 teams at the Big 12 Championship tournament today in Norman, Okla.
The Big 12 conference fields seven men’s tennis teams because five schools do not have the program. Because of this, A&M, the No. 2 seed in the tournament, will play a first round match against Nebraska.
Baylor, the only team to defeat A&M in conference play, received the No. 1 seed and has a first-round bye.
Though the Aggies defeated the Cornhuskers 5-2 during conference play, the Aggies are not taking the match lightly.
When the Aggies hosted the Cornhuskers at George P. Mitchell Tennis Center on April 10, it took A&M more than 4 1/2 hours to win the match. The Cornhuskers took the Aggies to three sets in five of the six singles matches.
“We are gearing up again knowing that the season starts over on Friday,” said A&M Head Coach Steven Denton. “We have to be ready to play Nebraska. I think we had a tough match with Nebraska and so that makes the guys respect them.”
A strong run in the tournament could secure home court advantage in the first two rounds of the NCAA Championships. In Denton’s three years with the Aggies, A&M has failed to earn home court advantage for the first and second rounds of the NCAA Championship.
“We are going to have an at-large bid, but the key is whether we are going to host a regional,” Denton said. “We just want to make sure we are able to host the first two rounds here.”
If the higher seeded teams win, the road to the Big 12 title will not be an easy as the Aggies will rematch against the Longhorns in the semifinals and Baylor in the finals. The Aggies are eager to get another shot at the Bears, but they have to take care of other teams if they want to get that chance.
“Baylor is a very good team and we would look forward to playing them, but we have a lot of work to do before we think about them,” Denton said. “If the seeds hold we will have a tough match against Texas. It would be great if we got the opportunity to play Baylor again, I know the guys would be excited for the chance to play them again.”
For Pollock, this will be his final shot at a Big 12 Championship trophy. In his four years with A&M, the Aggies have not won. Pollock and the rest of the Aggies will look to make a run into the tournament and maintain their position as a NCAA Regional Tournament host.
“This is my last go around so I am going to try and go out there and play well,” Pollock said. “All I am really focused on right now is Nebraska, so hopefully we will go out there and have a good team win.”

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