The No. 9 Texas A&M men’s tennis team fell to the No. 4 Baylor Bears in the final round of the ITA Kickoff on Sunday. Baylor will now advance to the ITA National Team Indoor Championships on Feb. 12.
Originally scheduled for Jan. 24, the match was postponed until Feb. 7 and relocated from Ann Arbor, Mich., to Dallas. Baylor came up on top 4-1 over the Aggies, and the Bears are the last of eight teams to qualify for the Indoor Championships in Urbana-Champaign, Illinois. The Aggies started out on top early, but it wasn’t enough and the script soon flipped.
“That was a really good college tennis match today,” A&M head coach Steve Denton told 12thman.com. “We came up a little short today, but fought really hard and had a great attitude out there.”
During doubles play, the Aggies took wins on courts 2 and 3 to secure an early 1-0 lead.
The A&M duo of Hady Habib and Noah Schachter got the first victory on court 2. Then, Carlos Aguilar and Bjorn Thomson, ranked 48th nationally, lost on court 1 to Baylor’s duo of Sven Lah and Constantin Frantzen, who are ranked 10th nationally. Valentin Vacherot and Pierce Rollins topped it off for the Aggies, scoring five straight points to win the tiebreaker in their doubles match.
Singles play was a different story as the Bears roared back en route to four straight singles match victories. Despite forcing third sets on three of the six courts, the Aggies lost four consecutive singles matches on courts 6, 5, 2 and 3, leaving courts 1 and 4 unfinished. This marked a 4-1 win for Baylor to advance them to the Indoor Championships.
“We never like losing especially with so much on the line, but our guys left it all out there,” Denton told 12thman.com. “It just was not quite good enough at the end of the day.”