Men’s Tennis Falls Short against New Mexico, UC Irvine

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – The Texas A&M - Corpus Christi men's tennis team continued competition today at the Ned and Tina Jacobs Lobo Tennis Winter Kickoff at the Linda Estes Tennis Center. The Islanders dropped two tough matches against New Mexico and UC Irvine on the second day of play.

The No. 67-ranked Islanders (1-3) fell 4-0 in a rematch with the Lobos (3-0) before coming up short 4-3 against UC Irvine (1-3) in a hard fought battle.

"It didn't go our way, we came up on the short end today," Director of Tennis Steve Moore said. "It was an incredible college tennis match against UC Irvine. I love the format. It was incredibly exciting. We competed extremely hard."

After falling to the Lobos, the Islanders came firing back in the second match of the day with a huge lift from Matt Westmoreland. With the Islanders down 3-2, the senior fought hard in a three-set tussle against Jonathan Hammel in the No. 5 slot to even the match and force doubles play for the first time in the tournament. The Oahu, Hawaii native garnered a 6-1 first-set victory, before being edged out 7-5 in the second set. In the final set with the match on the line, the captain saved seven match points to win 7-6 (10) and lift the Islanders into the tiebreaker. The Islanders and UC Irvine went neck-and-neck in doubles play before the Anteaters clinched the match with an 11-9 victory in the third match.

The Islanders received its first point of the match against UC Irvine after Javier Pujol made quick work of Caryl Hernandez in the No. 4 slot, 6-1, 6-3. Guillaume Rauseo extended the Islanders lead to 2-0 after topping Tyler Pham, 6-2, 6-4 on court three. UC Irvine rallied back with a pair of wins on courts one and two to knot the match at 2-2.

Rafael Davidian defeated Ricardo Mayagoitia 7-6 (4), 6-2 in the No. 2 spot, while Ryan Cheung registered a three-set win over Peter Nagy on court one. In the first set, Cheung notched a 6-4 win before Nagy took an early 5-2 lead en route to a 6-3 win in the second set. In the third, it was all Cheung with the 6-1 victory.

The Anteaters surged ahead with their second three-set victory. In the No. 6 slot, Pietro Jordao went back-and-forth with Shuhei Shibahara in a three-setter after squeezing out a 7-6 (4) first-set victory. In the second set, Shibahara responded with a 6-4 victory before handing Jordao the third set loss, 6-4.

With the match on the line it all came down to Westmoreland who forced the first doubles tiebreaker. In doubles play, Jordao and Pujol teamed up against Pham and Shibahara, but came up short 10-6. Freshman Paul Cook and Westmoreland downed Hernandez and Justin Agbayani 10-8 to tie the match once again.

The final point came on court one where the duo of Cheung and Hammel edged out the tandem of Nagy and Rauseo 11-9 to clinch the match.

"It didn't go our way, but this was an incredible college tennis match," Moore said. "I think this format is awesome and so good for our sport. It came down to the super tiebreaker in doubles and we lost 11-9 in the one that counted."

In the first match of the day, the Islanders faced No. 72-ranked New Mexico in a rematch of Friday night's match. The Lobos jumped out early with a 2-0 lead after Pujol fell short 6-3, 6-0 to Rodolfo Jauregui in the No. 3 slot and Cook, in his college debut, dropped a 6-3, 6-1 loss to Mads Hegelund in the No. 5 spot.

Hayden Sabatka followed suit with a 6-3, 6-2 victory over Rauseo in the No. 2 position to pad the Lobos lead to 3-0. On court four, Westmoreland wouldn't let his team go down without a fight and forced James Hignett to a three-setter. After dropping the first set 6-3, the senior battled back to win the second set 6-3. In the third, Hignett took an early 4-2 lead and captured the next two games to take the set, 6-2, and help keep the Lobos undefeated.

"We played a very tough tough match against New Mexico with three matches in three sets," Moore said. "Philip and Peter played excellent matches against New Mexico and both were in their third sets when it was stopped. They both showed spirit and energy, and I thought they did a great job with the things they could control."

For the second straight match, No. 1 singles player Nagy and No. 45-ranked Samir Iftikhar did not get to complete their match. Nagy took the first set 6-2, while Iftikhar sealed the second, 7-5, and was ahead 4-3 in the third.

Also making his Islander debut was freshman Philip Kuehnen in the No. 6 slot. The La Nucia Alicante, Spain native forced Bryan Cunningham to a third set after dropping the first set, 6-3, and capturing the second set, 7-6 (4). In the third the two were deadlocked at 2-2 when the match was clinched.

The Islanders will conclude play on Sunday against UC Irvine at 9 a.m. MST and will wrap the kickoff against Arizona at 4 p.m. MST. 

"We will learn from this, get better and stick together," Moore added. "We will be ready to go again tomorrow. These guys have good character, they are fighting hard and they are learning."  

The Ned and Tina Jacobs Lobo Tennis Winter Kickoff features the new shortened college format where singles is played first and the match stops when the team reaches four points. In the case of a 3-3 tie, the winner will be determined by who takes the best two of three 10-point tiebreakers in doubles play.

For all the latest on Islanders Tennis, like the team on Facebook (IslandersTennis) and follow them on Twitter and Instagram (@IslandersTennis).

 

Tennis Match Results

Texas A&M - Corpus Christi vs. New Mexico

1/18/2014 at Albuquerque, N.M.

 

#72 New Mexico 4, #67 Texas A&M - Corpus Christi 0

Singles competition:

1. #45 Samir Iftikhar (UNM) vs. Peter Nagy (AMCC) 2-6, 7-5, 4-3, unfinished

2. Hayden Sabatka (UNM) def. Guillaume Rauseo (AMCC) 6-3, 6-2

3. Rodolfo Jauregui (UNM) def. Javier Pujol (AMCC) 6-3, 6-0

4. James Hignett (UNM) def. Matt Westmoreland (AMCC) 6-3, 3-6, 6-2

5. Mads Hegelund (UNM) def. Paul Cook (AMCC) 6-3, 6-1

6. Philip Kuehnen (AMCC) def. Bryan Cunningham (UNM) 3-6, 7-6 (7-4), 2-2, unfinished

 

Match Notes:

Texas A&M - Corpus Christi 1-2; National ranking #67

New Mexico 3-0; National ranking #72

Order of finish: Singles (3,5,2,4)

Ned and Tina Jacobs Lobo Tennis Winter Kickoff

 
 

Tennis Match Results

UC Irvine vs. Texas A&M - Corpus Christi

1/18/2014 at Albuquerque, N.M.

 

UC Irvine 4, #67 Texas A&M - Corpus Christi 3

Singles competition:

1. Ryan Cheung (UCI) def. Peter Nagy (AMCC) 6-4, 3-6, 6-1

2. Rafael Davidian (UCI) def. Ricardo Mayagoitia (AMCC) 7-6 (7-4), 6-2

3. Guillaume Rauseo (AMCC) def. Tyler Pham (UCI) 6-2, 6-4

4. Javier Pujol (AMCC) def. Caryl Hernandez (UCI) 6-1, 6-3

5. Matt Westmoreland (AMCC) def. Jonathan Hammel (UCI) 6-1, 5-7, 7-6 (12-10)

6. Shuhei Shibahara (UCI) def. Pietro Jordao (AMCC) 6-7 (4-7), 6-4, 6-4

 

Doubles competition:

1. Ryan Cheung/Jonathan Hammel (UCI) def. Peter Nagy/Guillaume Rauseo (AMCC) 11-9

2. Paul Cook/Matt Westmoreland (AMCC) def. Caryl Hernandez/Justin Agbayani (UCI) 10-8

3. Tyler Pham/Shuhei Shibahara (UCI) def. Pietro Jordao/Javier Pujol (AMCC) 10-6

 

Match Notes:

UC Irvine 1-3

Texas A&M - Corpus Christi 1-3; National ranking #67

Order of finish: Doubles (3,2,1); Singles (4,3,2,1,6,5)

Ned and Tina Jacobs Lobo Tennis Winter Kickoff