Tigers Nip Aggies, 4-3
COLLEGE STATION, Texas - The 11th-ranked Texas A&M men's tennis team fell to LSU, 4-3, on Friday evening at the George P. Mitchell Tennis Center in front of 250 fans. The Aggies fall to 12-7 and 3-2 in the SEC while the Tigers climb to 6-6 and 1-4 in SEC action.
"We had our chances," Texas A&M head coach Steve Denton said. "We did a good job of winning the doubles point. We got behind early and you could see the match going in their direction once singles started to get going. Niall was able to win the second set and turn his match around. I know it's very disappointing for him to break and serve several times for match point and not get it done there at the end. It's a bitter loss. He did the right things, the other guy just did a better job of executing in the important moments at the end of that. If you allow a match to get that close, anything can happen. Unfortunately, we've taken a couple of 4-3 losses that have come down to tiebreakers in the third."
The Aggies started quickly in pairs play to jump ahead to an early advantage. The 15th-ranked tandem of Junior Ore and Jackson Withrow defeated Olivier Borsos and Roger Anderson, 8-5, to claim the first doubles win for Texas A&M. Shortly after, the 13th-ranked duo of Harry Adams and Shane Vinsant bested Tam Trinh and Stefan Szacinski, 8-6, at the No. 2 line to clinch the point for the Aggies.
Texas A&M didn't start as fast as normal after claiming the doubles point, falling behind early by dropping four-of-six first sets. Behzad Minavi fell to Harrison Kennedy in straight sets, 6-2, 6-2, at the No. 5 line to knot the match at one. Jordan Szabo wasted no time in putting the Aggies back on top, downing Trinh, 6-3, 6-1, at the No. 4 line to put A&M back on top, 2-1. The match continue to ebb and flow when LSU's Szacinski bested 118th-ranked Adams, 6-2, 6-4, at the No. 3 line to again tie the match. The Tigers took the lead for the first time on the evening when Chris Simpson upset 52nd-ranked Jeremy Efferding, 6-4, 6-4, from the No. 2 line to give LSU a 3-2 advantage. Ore quickly evened the match from the No. 1 line, winning 6-2, 7-6 (4), over Borsos to tie the contest at 3-3.
All eyes fell to Niall Angus, a late insert into the lineup when Withrow and Vinsant were scratches due to injury. After splitting the first two sets, 5-7 and 6-4, the third set featured a vicious back and forth with both teams holding serve through the first eight games. Angus was able to break Arias' serve and take a 5-4 lead. Arias broke back and evened the match at five, and then held serve to take a 6-5 lead. Angus was able to force a tiebreaker to decide the match. Despite a valiant effort, the London, England, native was unable to deliver a victory, falling in the tiebreaker, 7-1.
Texas A&M will be in action again on Sunday when it concludes the home stand against 46th-ranked Arkansas. First serve is slated for 1 p.m. To learn more about the Texas A&M men's tennis team, visit AggieAthletics.com and follow @AggieMTEN on Twitter.
No. 68 LSU def. No. 11 Texas A&M, 4-3
No. 1 - Junior Ore, A&M vs. Olivier Borsos, LSU 6-2, 7-6 (4)
No. 2 - Chris Simpson, LSU def. No. 52 Jeremy Efferding, A&M 6-4, 6-4
No. 3 -Stefan Szacinski, LSU def. No. 118 Harry Adams, A&M 6-2, 6-4
No. 4 - Jordan Szabo, A&M vs. Tam Trinh, LSU 6-3, 6-1
No. 5 - Harrison Kennedy, LSU def. Behzad Minavi, A&M 6-2, 6-2
*No. 6 - Boris Arias, LSU def. Niall Angus, A&M 7-5, 4-6, 7-6 (1)
No. 1 - No. 15 Withrow/Ore, A&M def. Boros/Simpson, LSU 8-5
No. 2 - No. 13 Adams/Vinsant, A&M def. Scazinski/Trinh, LSU 8-6
No. 3 - Effering/Szabo, A&M vs. Simpson/Bowtell, LSU 6-6 (unfinished)
Order of finish: Doubles 1, 2 Singles 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, 6
*clinched the match
Texas A&M (12-7, 3-2 SEC); LSU (6-6, 1-4 SEC)