FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The 20th-ranked Arkansas Razorbacks outlasted the Black Knights of Army, 5-2, Saturday in West Point, N.Y. The Hogs are now 2-0 on the season.
“This was a great, great dual match,” said Coach Robert Cox, “Army is very underrated. I’m very pleased with the way my guys had to adapt in a very difficult place to play, on fast indoor courts. I’m very proud of the way we fought and won a couple of three-setters.”
The Razorbacks jumped out to the early advantage by taking the doubles point. Juniors Adrians Zguns and Rohan Gajjar, playing at No. 2, improved their 2005 mark to 2-0 with an 8-4 victory over Army’s John Haughton and Sebe Salas. Senior Talley Parker and Sophomore Andrei Nicoara won at No. 3, 9-8 over Mike Good and Josh Jones, evening their record at 1-1 for the season. The nation’s 27th-ranked doubles team of Senior Imraan Ismail and Junior Matt Roberts fell to at No. 1 to the Black Knights’ duo of Carl Fisher and Kyle Roybal, 8-4.
Ismail and Roberts recovered from their doubles’ setback, both improving to 2-0 in singles this year with straight-set victories. Ismail defeated Kevin Harris, 6-3, 6-2, at No. 5, while Roberts, ranked 121st nationally in singles, handled Salas, 6-1, 6-3, at No. 3.
“Matt and Imraan came off the court very quickly in their singles matches, and that really set the tone for us,” Cox said.
At No.1 singles, Zguns held off Haughton, 6-0, 4-6, 7-5. Zguns, No. 56 in the country, is now 2-0 on the season. Gajjar, No. 77, also improved to 2-0 with a 4-6, 6-2, 7-5 win over Fisher.
Army took the match at No. 4 with Good defeating UA’s Matt Simpson, 4-6, 7-6, 6-2. Razorback freshman Jimmy Khougssian dropped his first match of the season, 6-3, 4-6, 7-5, to the Black Knights’ Eddie Kang at No. 6. Khougssian is now 1-1 in 2005, while Simpson falls to 0-2.
The Razorbacks face a big test Tuesday night when they return to Fayetteville to battle Oklahoma.
“We’ve really got to step it up now,” Cox said, “We’ve got to get ready for a big match with Oklahoma on Tuesday night.”
OU is currently ranked 53rd, and boasts a record of 3-0. The Hogs match with the Sooners is scheduled for 5 p.m. at the Dills Indoor Tennis Center in Fayetteville.
1. Carl Fisher/Kyle Roybal (Army) def. No. 27 Matt Roberts/Imraan Ismail (UA), 8-4
2. Adrians Zguns/Rohan Gajjar (UA) def. John Haughton/Sebe Salas (Army), 8-4
3. Talley Parker/Andrei Nicoara (UA) def. Mike Good/Josh Jones (Army), 9-8
1. No. 56 Adrians Zguns (UA) def. John Haughton (Army), 6-0, 4-6, 7-5
2. No. 77 Rohan Gajjar (UA) def. Carl Fisher (Army), 4-6, 6-2, 7-5
3. No. 121 Matt Roberts (UA) def. Sebe Salas (Army), 6-1, 6-3
4. Mike Good (Army) def. Matt Simpson (UA), 4-6, 7-6, 6-2
5. Imraan Ismail (UA) def. Kevin Harris (Army), 6-3, 6-2
6. Eddie Kang (Army) def. Jimmy Khougssian (UA), 6-3, 4-6, 7-5