Arkansas Drops #13 Texas, 4-3
BY ANDRES FOCIL
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Arkansas’ (2-0) tennis team used great singles play to defeat the Texas Longhorns (4-1), No. 13 in the nation, 4-3 in an intense hard fought battle in front of a crowd of 400 at the Dills Indoor Tennis Center.
“This is a great win for our program,” head coach Robert Cox stated. “It was a great week of practice for our players. I could tell they wanted this victory. It is always special when Arkansas squares off with Texas, and it showed with the crowd we had in attendance.”
Arkansas dropped the doubles point, by losing at number one and two doubles. At number one doubles, Nathan Price and Matt Simpson took on Pete Stroer and Jimmy Haney of Texas. Stroer and Haney won, 8-1. Number two doubles saw Arkansas’ Adrians Zguns and Rohan Gajjar take on Texas’ Antonio Ruiz and Jose Zarhi, No. 31 in the nation, in a close match until a break in the eleventh game gave Texas the chance to pull out victory, 8-5. At number three doubles, Matt Roberts and Imraan Ismail took on Hubert Chodkiewicz and Joe Morris, No. 44 in the nation. Roberts and Ismail pulled out a close fought match with a late break of serve to win, 9-7.
Trailing 1-0 after doubles Arkansas needed great singles play to win four matches in order to pull off the upset of Texas. Number one singles saw Adrians Zguns, No. 14 in the nation, improve to 19-4 on the season in a match against Antonio Ruiz. Zguns and Ruiz traded breaks early in the match, but Zguns pulled away to win, 6-4, 6-2 and even the dual match score at 1-1. Imraan Ismail and Hubert Codkiewicz played at six singles. Ismail defeated Codkiewicz, 6-4, 7-5 to put the Hogs up 2-1. Number four singles saw Matt Simpson face Will Clinton of Texas in a match that pitted two aggressive players against each other. After trading service games for a set, the two played a tiebreaker at 6-6, and saw Clinton take the first set, 7-6. In the second set, Clinton got a break late in the set to win the match, 7-6, 6-3 to even Texas at 2-2 with Arkansas. At number two singles, Nathan Price, No. 50 in the nation, and Jose Zarhi, No. 73, played close throughout, but Price pulled out each set by a break of serve to win, 6-4, 6-4 and make the match score 3-2. The decisive match came down to Arkansas’ Matt Roberts and Jimmy Haney of Texas at five singles. Roberts and Haney played a first set tiebreaker that saw Roberts pull it out 8-6 to win the first set, 7-6. Roberts would get up two breaks in the second set at, 5-2 before Haney battled back to even the match at, 5-5. In the eleventh game, Roberts grabbed the final break of the match, and then held serve to win the match, 7-6(8-6), 7-5. Shortly after clinching the match Arkansas’ Rohan Gajjar and Texas’ Pete Stroer, No. 84 in the nation, finished the match at number five singles. Stroer came back from one set down to win, 5-7, 6-3, 6-2. With the victory, Arkansas defeated Texas 4-3.
Arkansas will next take on DePaul on Friday, Feb. 13 at 6 p.m. when the team travels to Chicago. Arkansas will also take on Northwestern on Sunday, Feb. 15 at 1 p.m.
1. #14 Adrians Zguns(AR) def. Antonio Ruiz(UT), 6-4, 6-2
2. #50 Nathan Price(AR) def. #73 Jose Zarhi(UT), 6-4, 6-4
3. #84 Pete Stroer(UT) def. Rohan Gajjar(AR), 5-7, 6-3, 6-2
4. Will Clinton(UT) def. Matt Simpson(AR), 7-6, 6-3
5. Matt Roberts(AR) def. Jimmy Haney(UT), 7-6, 7-5
6. Imraan Ismail(AR) def. Hubert Codkiewicz, 6-4, 7-5
1. Pete Stroer/ Jimmy Haney(UT) def. Matt Simpson/Nathan Price(AR), 8-1
2. #31 Antonio Ruiz/Jose Zarhi(UT) def. Adrians Zguns/Rohan Gajjar(AR), 8-5
3. Matt Roberts/Imraan Ismail(AR) def. #44 Hubert Codkiewicz/Joe Morris(UT), 9-7
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