TCU Defeats Middle Tennessee
March 15, 2014
FORT WORTH, Texas – With the deciding match going all the way to a third set tiebreaker, the No. 43 TCU men’s tennis team fought hard to pick up a 4-3 decision over Middle Tennessee State on Saturday on the indoor courts of the Bayard H. Friedman Tennis Center.
Leading 3-2 in the match, the Horned Frogs (8-5) looked towards No. 109 Arnau Dachs to finish out the match against the Blue Raiders (4-10), but the junior had to battle two tiebreakers for the win on court three. Dachs earned a 6-4 victory in the first set, but Victor Cornea did not let up and took a 7-6 (5) win in the second set. Down 6-5 in the third set, the junior broke Cornea to send the match into a tiebreaker and then kept the advantage by winning 7-5 in the tiebreaker to clinch the fourth point and victory for TCU.
“I am proud of our team for finding a way to get that fourth point that has been hard to get at times, especially the way it happened,” coach David Roditi said. “Arnau Dachs has grown so much and he has become such a better competitor. Today he had a lot going against him, but he found a way to win. I am proud of him and it shows how much tougher and how much better of a competitor he is now. Obviously when you win the deciding match in a third set tiebreaker, that shows you a lot.”
The match began with an easy 8-1 dominating victory on court three in doubles for Hudson Blake and Facundo Lugones. The duo are now undefeated in doubles action with a record of 5-0 and have won the first doubles match for TCU in all five of their victories.
The second doubles point would not come easy for the Frogs, as No. 43 David Fox and Cornea began the match on court one with a 4-1 lead over No. 13 Nick Chappell and Will Stein. The pair had to dig deep to even the match back up at 4-4, before the duos began to trade games with the match eventually sent into a tiebreaker. Chappell and Stein kept the momentum going and gutted out a 7-4 win in the tiebreaker to give TCU the doubles point and a 1-0 lead in the match.
The nationally ranked pair improves to 6-4 at No. 1 doubles and are now 4-2 against nationally ranked opponents for the season.
TCU kept up the pressure in singles action, with No. 99 Lugones downing Fox 6-4, 6-1 in straight sets to put the Frogs ahead 2-0. Trey Daniel made the match 3-0 afterwards with a 7-6 (5), 6-2 win over Aaron Jumonville.
“I am really proud of the way Facundo (Lugones) played on the indoor courts and how Trey Daniel played his match,” Roditi said. “Those were some huge points for our team today.”
On the brink of defeat, Middle Tennessee did not waiver, as Victor Hoang stifled a comeback from Rodolfo Bustamante to put the Blue Raiders on the board with a 6-4, 1-6, 6-2 win over the senior from Brazil. Ettore Zito put up the second point for Middle Tennessee when he upset No. 54 Nick Chappell 6-4, 5-7, 7-5 on court one.
Dachs ended the comeback with his three-set win on court three and notched his team-leading 10th victory this season. The Blue Raiders won the final point of the match, when Sam Matheson came from behind to defeat Stein 1-6, 6-2, 6-2 on court six.
“It is actually a disadvantage for us to go indoors, so I think we did a great job of overcoming that and finding a way to win,” Roditi said. “At the same time, we are a better team than what we played today. Some guys played really well, but some guys could get better.”
TCU will continue action at home, as the Frogs will host Columbia on Thursday, March 20 at 5:30 p.m., at the Bayard H. Friedman Tennis Center. Admission is free, with free pizza delivered courtesy of Buffalo Bros., in between the doubles and singles matches.
Tennis Match Results
#43 TCU 4, Middle Tennessee 3