FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — The University of Arkansas men’s tennis team begins their conference season this weekend, traveling to South Carolina on Friday, and Florida on Sunday.
“We are showing a lot of fight, I’m very pleased,” said head coach Robert Cox. “We are playing solid, we just have to work on closing out our matches.”
The Hogs (3-5) will first match up against the South Carolina Gamecocks on Friday at 2 p.m., in Columbia, S.C. The Gamecocks are one of the few unranked tennis teams in the Southeastern Conference, and are without any ranked players as well. South Carolina is coming off a win against South Carolina Upstate, and currently possess a record of 4-5.
“We are focusing on one win at a time,” said Cox. “First we have to worry about South Carolina on Friday, and then we’ll start thinking about Florida.”
On Sunday, the Razorbacks will travel to Gainesville, Fla., to face the No. 11-ranked Gators. The Gators have a 7-3 record in non-conference play, and three top-ranked players in No. 6 Alexandre Lacroix, No. 32 Sekou Banoura Jr. and No. 125 Nassim Slilam. They also have two doubles teams that are ranked in the top 50. Lacroix and Slilam together are ranked No. 20, and Bangoura paired with Michael Alford are ranked No. 50.
“I think we’re ready to go,” said Cox. “We are very excited to start the SEC season.”
The Razorbacks have broken back into the doubles rankings as well. Mike Ward and Nikolas Zogaj are No. 66 in the ITA rankings. The pair is 6-1 on the season, receiving their first lost at the hands of Tulsa. The Hogs are hoping to snap their streak of four straight losses this weekend. For more information about the men’s tennis team, log on to www.ArkansasRazorbacks.com.