HOUSTON, Texas – The No. 24 Texas Tech men’s tennis team was able to grab an early lead, but No. 6 Texas A&M claimed three of the last four singles matches en route to a 4-3 decision on Sunday at the Downtown Club at the Met in Houston.
The Red Raiders (11-3) fell by a 4-3 margin for the first time on the season. Texas Tech had won their previous three 4-3 dual matchups.
“A great opportunity for us today,” Texas Tech head coach Brett Masi said. “They were short-handed, and unfortunately we couldn't come out on top. We played great in doubles again, and I'm really pleased with that. Hats off to Texas A&M for coming from behind. We will learn from this and get some rest. We look forward to a big home match against Indiana on Friday.”
The Red Raiders grabbed the doubles point for the 11th time in 14 matches courtesy of victories from the No. 1 and No. 3 positions in the lineup.
Artem Kapshuk and Ilgiz Valiev dialed up a 6-4 win over A.J. Catanzariti and Barnaby Smith on court three, while Connor Curry and Tommy Mylnikov took down the nation’s No. 6 tandem in Jordi Arconada and Juan Carlos Aguilar by a 7-5 score line at the top spot.
When doubles play was stopped, No. 35 Jackson Cobb and Alex Sendegeya were locked in a 6-6 tiebreak with Valentin Vacherot and Arthur Rinderknech in the No. 2 spot.
The Aggies got the equalizer to open singles action from No. 35 Vacherot who defeated Curry by a 6-3, 6-2 margin on the No. 2 singles line.
Valiev put the Red Raiders back ahead 2-1 when he rattled off a 6-4, 6-3 victory over No. 97 Catanzariti on court four. He collected his seventh consecutive win and improved to 11-2 in dual matches.
Texas A&M drew even at 2-2 after Smith picked up a 6-2, 6-3 decision over Kapshuk in the No. 5 position. Then, No. 67 Arconada outlasted Mylnikov 6-0, 7-5 on court one to put the Aggies up 3-2.
Sendegeya kept the Red Raiders alive and grinded out a 6-2, 4-6, 7-5 victory over Aguilar in the No. 3 slot. He ended a three-match losing skid to knot the score at 3-3.
All eyes turned to court six for the deciding point. The Aggies received a 3-6, 6-3, 6-3 comeback win from Lam over Cobb to capture the fourth point.
Texas Tech returns home to meet Indiana on Friday. First serve is set for 3 p.m. CT from the McLeod Tennis Center. Admission is free to all home matches.
No. 6 Texas A&M 4, Texas Tech 3
Feb. 11, 2018 at Houston, Texas (The Downtown Club at the Met)
1 – No. 67 Jordi Arconada (A&M) defeats Tommy Mylnikov (TTU): 6-0, 7-5
2 – No. 35 Valentin Vacherot (A&M) defeats Connor Curry (TTU): 6-3, 6-2
3 – Alex Sendegeya (TTU) defeats Juan Carlos Aguilar (A&M): 6-2, 4-6, 7-5
4 – Ilgiz Valiev (TTU) defeats No. 97 A.J. Catanzariti (A&M): 6-4, 6-3
5 – Barnaby Smith (A&M) defeats Artem Kapshuk (TTU): 6-2, 6-3
6 – Kevin Lam (A&M) defeats Jackson Cobb (TTU): 3-6, 6-3, 6-3
Order of finish: 2, 4, 5, 1, 3, 6
1 – Connor Curry/Tommy Mylnikov (TTU) defeats No. 6 Jordi Arconada/Juan Carlos Aguilar (A&M): 7-5
2 – No. 35 Jackson Cobb/Alex Sendegeya (TTU) vs. Valentin Vacherot/Arthur Rinderknech (A&M): 6-6, unfinished
3 – Artem Kapshuk/Ilgiz Valiev (TTU) defeats A.J. Catanzariti/Barnaby Smith (A&M): 6-4
Order of finish: 3, 1
Texas Tech: 11-3; National Ranking: No. 24
Texas A&M: 5-1; National Ranking: No. 6