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COLLEGE STATION, Texas – The No. 6 ranked Ole Miss men’s tennis came into their final regular season Southeastern Conference match against No. 14 Texas A&M with a chance to clinch the outright SEC West Championship and the No. 2 seed in the upcoming SEC Tournament Championship. The Aggies had other ideas, taking a 4-1 win here Sunday at the George P. Mitchell Tennis Center.
Despite the loss, the Rebels (15-7, 7-5) finish the regular season with a share of their 10th SEC Western Division Championship. They tied for third overall with three others teams, and earned the No. 5 seed in the upcoming SEC Championship in Oxford. Ole Miss will face the winner of the No. 12 Alabama/No. 13 Arkansas match Thursday at 3 p.m. at the Palmer/Salloum Tennis Center.
The Aggies jumped out to the early lead by taking the doubles point with wins on courts two and three. They won a couple of huge tiebreakers in singles and gained wins on courts three, four and five to post the victory.
After dropping the doubles point, junior Johan Bacsktrom lost to Aggie Jackson Withrow at No.5 singles as A&M went ahead 2-0.
Senior Jonas Lutjen, ranked No. 14 in the nation, won his match 6-2, 7-6(3) at No. 2 singles against Junior Ore to get the Rebels on the board. With the win, Lutjen improved to 28-9 overall, 12-5 at No. 2 singles and concluded the SEC at 8-3.
Texas A&M clinched the match with two very close wins at three and four singles by winning tiebreakers. One break decided the first set at four in favor of Shane Vinsant 6-4 against sophomore William Kallberg. The two held serve to get to a tiebreak in the second set, where Vinsant dominated 7-1 to put the Aggies up 3-1. Moments later, A&M’s Harry Adams finished freshman Stefan Lindmark 7-6(3), 7-6(3) to clinch the victory.
“They played a little bit better than we did at two and three doubles,” head coach Billy Chadwick said. “Overall, they were able to play better on the big points. Jonas played well, and Sko was going to win. If Willie or Slick gets the second set breaker, then all of a sudden we’re still out there playing.”
Forberg Skogeng led 3-1 in the final set at six against Aggie Niall Angus and Scholtz, who was back in the lineup in both singles and doubles for the first time in two weeks, was 4-4 in the second set to Jeremy Efferding at one.
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#14 Texas A&M 4, #6 Ole Miss 1
1. #4 Lutjen/Scholtz (OM) vs. #9 Ore/Withrow (A&M) 6-5, sus.
2. #26 Adams/Vinsant (A&M) def. #71 Backstrom/Lindmark (OM) 8-5
3. Efferding/Szabo (A&M def. Kallberg/Wilder (OM) 8-3
Order of Finish: 3, 2
1. #15 Nik Scholtz (OM) vs. #40 Jeremy Efferding (A&M) 5-7, 4-4, sus.
2. #14 Jonas Lutjen (OM) def. Junior Ore (A&M) 6-2, 7-6(3)
3. #119 Harry Adams (A&M) def. Stefan Lindmark (OM) 7-6(3), 7-6(3)
4. #78 Shane Vinsant (A&M) def. #95 William Kallberg (OM) 6-4, 7-6(1)
5. Jackson Withrow (A&M) def. Johan Backstrom (OM) 6-1, 6-4
6. Adrian Forberg-Skogeng (OM) vs. Niall Angus (A&M) 6-2, 4-6, 3-1, sus.
Order of Finish: 5, 2, 4, 3