CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Drawing the national No.2 player in the first round at the 2008 ITA National Indoor Championships is no one’s idea of a dream draw, but the University of Arkansas’ Matt Hogan, ranked 125th in the country, made the best of his match against Denes Lukacs from Baylor, pushing the former Hungarian Davis Cup team member to a tiebreak in the first set before Lukacs claimed the victory, 7-6(4), 6-2.
“Matt played really well today, but Lukacs served a couple of big second serves, a couple of big aces and took the win,” head coach Robert Cox said. “I’m very pleased with the effort from him even though he didn’t come out on top.”
Also facing a top-notch opponent was senior Blake Strode who drew Georgia Tech’s No.33-ranked Guillermo Gomez in the round of 32. Not at his best on Thursday, the 41st-ranked Strode fell in straight sets to Gomez, 6-3, 6-3.
“Gomez is a quality indoor player and Blake didn’t play his best, but it was awfully good tennis,” Cox said.
The Hogs will have more chances to win against other top players at National Indoors this weekend when play in the consolation singles tournament begins Friday at the Boar’s Head Sports Club in Charlottesville, Va., and Cox is pleased with how his guys look heading into the consolation draw.
“Everyone here is a top player in the country and we still have life here, in a national tournament, in the consolation draw where we’ve done well before,” Cox said.
Play in the consolation round of 16 and quarterfinals takes place on Friday. For updated scores and complete coverage of Razorbacks’ men’s tennis, log onto ArkansasRazorbacks.com.