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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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The BattalionMay 4, 2024

A&M men’s tennis splits doubleheader at home

Photo by Photo by Robert O’Brien

Freshman Gulio Perego looks up in the air getting ready to hit the ball at the Mitchell Tennis Center Wednesday, March 15. 

The No. 25 Texas A&M men’s tennis team took on system-school Prairie View A&M and No. 4 Tennessee on Friday, March 25 in its sixth doubleheader of the season. Despite starting off strong against the Panthers, the Aggies fell to a Volunteer comeback in the second half of the doubleheader.

To begin the day, the Aggies took on the Panthers in the doubles event. Junior Austin Abbrat and freshman Stefan Storch ran away with a 6-0 victory, quickly followed by 6-2 win by sophomore Matthis Ross and freshman Mathis Bondaz. A&M secured the doubles point from the Panthers with the third win by junior Noah Schachter and sophomore Kenner Taylor against Prairie View senior Jorge Juarez Caballero and freshman Diego Hatem.

Moving into singles action, Bondaz, Ross, Storch, Abbrat and Taylor all continued their success, scoring points for the maroon and white. Sophomore Anish Sriniketh added to the list with his win against Panther sophomore Adrien Blackwell. A&M swept Prairie View with a 7-0 win to end the first match of the day.

Coach Steve Denton said the team improved from its previous game against Prairie View.

I was real happy with the team getting the match earlier in the day,” Denton said. “Our team played well and actually played even better today than they did two weeks ago against Prairie View. I was pleased to get that opportunity for the guys on our team that continue to work so hard.”

The second game began at 6 p.m. against the No. 4 Tennessee Volunteers. A&M came out with momentum, securing the doubles point with a win from the duo of freshman Giulio Perego and sophomore Pierce Rollins. The momentum carried into the singles portion, with the Aggies taking the first set in four out of the six courts. The maroon and white locked in two points to put them up 2-0, with freshman Luke Casper putting up the third and final point for the Aggies. The Volunteers came back with a vengeance, stealing the win on four courts to steal the lead, and ultimately the win, from the Aggies.

“The Tennessee match was a great college tennis match,” Denton said. “We played really well in the doubles against one of the most energetic doubles teams in the country. They had a guy or two missing, and we took advantage of that to put a point on the board.”

A&M moves to 15-9 overall in the season and 3-2 in conference following the day. The maroon and white have played nine nationally-ranked teams this season and lost seven times. Within those matches, A&M was inconsistent in securing the doubles point, leaving little foundation for the struggles in the singles portion. 

Denton said being able to close is the team’s biggest challenge. 

“They put us up 3-0, and like the really good team that Tennessee is, they responded,” Denton said. “[I] give them a lot of credit for doing that. When they responded, we did not punch back in some key moments. Ultimately, that was the difference tonight. We continue to grow up and are playing better. When we are playing with some of the best teams in the country, we have to deliver that knock-out blow when they are on the ropes, but we let them keep standing tonight.”
A&M returns to the Mitchell Tennis Center on Sunday, March 27 to face No. 8 Georgia at 1 p.m. followed by a match against UTSA at 6 p.m.

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