FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Arkansas’ tennis team improved to 7-1 Sunday, notching a 7-0 win over Wichita St. at the Dills Indoor Tennis Center.
The 46th-ranked Razorbacks are off to their best start since 2004, when the Hogs began 8-1 on their way to the Sweet 16. All seven of UA’s victories have been shutouts.
It was Arkansas’ second win of the season over Wichita St. The Hogs defeated the Shockers, 4-0, on Jan. 21 at the ITA Central Region Championships.
UA jumped out to the early lead, winning the doubles point. It marks the sixth time in seven tries the Razorbacks have won the doubles point this season.
The top of the Hog singles lineup continued their solid play. 19th-ranked freshman Blake Strode was the first man off the court, knocking off WSU’s Rodrigo Briceno, 6-1, 6-0, at No. 3. Senior Rohan Gajjar, ranked 100th, was next with his, 6-3, 6-3, triumph over Boris Gubic. Senior Adrians Zguns, the reigning SEC Player of the Week, followed with a, 6-1, 6-3, win against Tiago Espirito Santo on court two. 24th-ranked senior Matt Roberts notched a three-set win at No. 1, 6-7, 6-0, 1-0 (11-9), against Goran Vujaklija.
Strode, Zguns and Roberts are each 6-0 this spring, while Gajjar is 5-1.
Zguns’ win was the 92nd of his Arkansas career, putting him one behind Jose Lambert for fifth on UA’s all-time list.
The Razorbacks posted a pair of three-set wins at No.’s 5 and 6. Sophomore Colin Mascall defeated Moti Eisikovits at No. 6, 6-4, 4-6, 6-1, while classmate Michael Jung outlasted Thiago Dos Santos, 7-6, 4-6, 1-0 (10-8).
Jung boosted his team-best overall record to 19-3. Roberts is next at 15-3, followed by Strode at 14-2, Zguns at 14-3, Gajjar at 10-4 and Mascall at 5-1.
The win sends Arkansas into next weekend’s ITA National Indoors in Seattle, Wash. The Razorbacks are set to open the event against the nation’s 3rd-ranked team, Illinois. The Fighting Illini are also the tournament’s No. 3 seed and won the National Indoors in 2003 and 2004.
Arkansas and Illinois will meet Friday at 5:30 at the Seattle Tennis Club.
The Hogs’ next home match is Friday, March 3 against 2nd-ranked Georgia in UA’s SEC opener.
#45 Arkansas 7
Wichita St. 0
1. Roberts/Gajjar (AR) def. Vujaklija/Gubic (WSU), 8-3
2. Zguns/Strode (AR) def. Dos Santos/Espirito Santo (WSU), 8-5
3. Khougassian/Mascall (AR) def. Eisikovits/Alvarado (WSU), 8-5
Order of Finish: 1, 2, 3
1. #24 Matt Roberts (AR) def. Goran Vujaklija (WSU), 6-7, 6-0, 1-0 (11-9)
2. Adrians Zguns (AR) def. Tiago Espirito Santo (WSU), 6-1, 6-3
3. #19 Blake Strode (AR) def. Rodrigo Briceno (WSU), 6-1, 6-0
4. #100 Rohan Gajjar (AR) def. Boris Gubic (WSU), 6-3, 6-3
5. Michael Jung (AR) def. Thiago dos Santos (WSU), 7-6, 4-6, 1-0 (10-8)
6. Colin Mascall (AR) def. Moti Eisikovits (WSU), 6-4, 4-6, 6-1
Order of Finish: 3, 4, 2, 1, 6, 5
#46 Arkansas (7-1), Wichita St. (2-2)
Zguns: 92nd career victory, one behind Jose Lambert for 5th on UA all-time list.