Feb. 21, 2014
By Kasandra Martinson
By Kasandra Martinson
FRESNO, Calif. --- The Fresno State men's tennis team was unable to hold on to its early lead, falling 4-3 to No. 69 New Mexico in a Mountain West matchup on Friday afternoon at Spalding G. Wathen Tennis Center.
"I'm absolutely gutted for the guys today, they put it on the line," said assistant coach James McKie. "New Mexico is one of the best teams in our conference and we were right there to win it."
The Bulldogs began the day strong, winning the doubles point for the second consecutive match with wins on courts one and three.
In the No. 1 spot junior Sai Kartik Nakireddi and freshman John Darmstaedter defeated New Mexico's James Hignett and Samir Iftikhar (8-6). After the Lobos took the doubles match on court two, the Bulldog rallied back with an 8-6 win on court three to clinch the doubles point from teammates Ethan Lopez and Nikolas Papic.
The Lobos grabbed the first singles point on court five to tie the score at 1-1. The Bulldogs then scored the next two points on courts one and four to gain a 3-2 lead.
With the match split 3-3, the deciding point came down final set on court three. Darmstaedter split the first two sets with New Mexico's Rodolfo Jauregui, sending the match into a final set to decide the MW dual. With momentum on their side, the Lobos charged through the third set to seal a 4-3 conference win over the Bulldogs.
"We have to learn from this match, move on and get right back to work on Sunday against UC Santa Barabara," added Mckie. "These situations are only going to make us tougher."
The Bulldogs (3-7, 0-2 MW) have a quick turnaround as they are set to travel to face UC Santa Barbara on Sunday, Feb. 23 at 1 p.m.
Fresno State 3, No. 69 New Mexico 4
1. Sai Kartik Nakireddi (FS) def. Samir Iftikhar (UNM) 6-2, 6-1
2. Hayden Sabatka (UNM) def. Sam MacNeil (FS) 6-3, 7-6
3. Rodolfo Jauregui (UNM) def. John Darmstaedter (FS) 3-6, 6-3, 6-1
4. Nikolas Papic (FS) def. Mitch McDaniels (UNM) 6-2, 6-4
5. James Hignett (UNM) def. Ethan Lopez (FS) 6-1, 6-2
6. Mads Hegelund (UNM) def. Alexandros Georgios (FS) 1-6, 6-1, 6-2
1. Sai Kartik Nakireddi/John Darmstaedter (FS) def. James Hignett/Samir Iftikhar (UNM) 8-6
2. Hayden Sabatka/Andrew Van Der Vyver (UNM) def. Sam MacNeil/Eric Komati (FS) 8-6
3. Ethan Lopez/Nikolas Papic (FS) def. Mads Hegelund/Rodolfo Jauregui (UNM) 8-6
Order of finish: Doubles (1,2,3); Singles (5,4,1,2,6,3)
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