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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Aggies sweep doubleheader against LSU and Lamar

Photo by Photo by Caleb Powell

Freshman Giulio Perego returns a ball to Chih Chi Huang from the University of Texas at the Mitchell Tennis Center on Wednesday, Mar. 9, 2022.

On Thursday, March 2, the Texas A&M men’s tennis team hosted a doubleheader against the Louisiana State University Tigers and the Lamar University Cardinals. After a tough loss to the Texas Longhorns in their previous outing, the Aggies looked to bounce back and start conference play on a winning note against the Tigers.
The first match of the doubleheader was the SEC showdown between A&M and LSU. The Tigers took an early lead at the Mitchell Tennis Center, winning the doubles point on two tight matches. On Court 1, the Aggies’ senior pair of Trey Hilderbrand and Noah Schachter struggled once again, falling to junior Stefan Latinovic and graduate Nick Watson 3-6. Hilderbrand and Schachter started the year ranked as the 33rd-ranked doubles team in the nation, but have only won three of their last seven matches. The Aggies responded on the second court thanks to a convincing 6-4 win by juniors Pierce Rollins and Kenner Taylor. The decisive match on court 3 went the distance, but LSU’s junior Ronald Hohmann and senior George Stoupe broke serve right at the end to defeat sophomore Giulio Perego and junior Raphael Perot 5-7, giving the Tigers the doubles point.
Facing a 1-0 deficit, the Aggies were quick to get on the board in singles play. Perego’s 6-1, 6-2 routing of junior Welsh Hotard leveled the match. Rollins then gave the Aggies the lead thanks to his 6-2, 6-4 victory against sophomore Julien Penzlin. On court 3, Perot doubled the lead for A&M in a match dominated by serving. The junior from Italy bested Latinovic 7-6 (6) 7-5. Hilderbrand finished the job for the Aggies with his 6-3, 7-5 win versus senior Ronald Hohmann. Hilderbrand’s win on court 1 gave A&M its first win of the 2023 SEC schedule and continued the Aggies’ domination of the Tigers on the court. The Ags have now beaten their rivals from the bayou each of the last three seasons, with a total aggregate score of 18-1.
After successfully kicking off its SEC campaign, coach Steve Denton’s team turned its attention to Lamar, while also keeping an eye on the weather as rain clouds loomed overhead. Play between the in-state rivals tentatively got underway, but neither team gained any traction before play was stopped because of the rain. All three doubles courts had only one complete game when the rain came in. Shortly after the rain passed, the players were given the green light to resume play. The Aggies made the most of their window of good weather, racing to secure the doubles point. Junior Matthis Ross and sophomore Luke Casper won 6-2 on court 3. Meanwhile, Hilderbrand and Schachter got back to winning ways on court 1, giving the Aggies the 1-0 lead.
The maroon and white dominated singles play from first serve to last, sweeping all 7 courts to see off the cardinals. Ross, sophomore J.C. Roddick and junior Rahul Dhokia were all particularly impressive. They dominated their matches 6-1, 6-1, 6-2, 6-2 and 6-1, 6-2 respectively. Those dominant performances secured the win for the Aggies before there was any chance of more rain. The final three matches saw closer action, but the Ags eventually saw off their opponents on every court, giving them the 7-0 sweep.
Despite the wet and windy conditions, it was a good day for the Aggies in College Station, as they secured two much-needed wins and a crucial SEC victory. They now look to carry this momentum into the weekend, where another conference clash awaits them at the Mitchell Tennis Center. This time, against No. 5 Kentucky, as well as a non-conference tilt versus UTSA. First serve against the Wildcats on Saturday, March 4, is set for 1 p.m., with the Roadrunners coming up later at 6 p.m.

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