Men's Tennis Surges Past UNLV in MW Opener, 4-3
Feb. 16, 2018
LAS VEGAS – The San Diego State men’s tennis team ended three weeks of frustration with its first victory of the season after rallying for a 4-3 triumph over UNLV on Friday in the Mountain West opener for both squads at Fertita Tennis Complex.
After dropping the doubles point, the Aztecs (1-6, 1-0 MW) stormed back with four wins in singles competition, including the final two of the evening in three sets to erase a 3-2 deficit on the team scoreboard.
SDSU drew first blood when the tandem of Santiago Cevallos and Rafael Gonzalez Almazan opened with a 6-3 conquest of the Rebels’ Jordan Sauer and Ruben Alberts at No. 3 doubles. However, UNLV (4-4, 0-1 MW) escaped with the early point after the duo of Alexandr Cozbinov and Courtney Lock subdued the Aztec pairing of Sander Gjoels-Andersen and Nicholas Mitchell by a 6-4 count on the No. 1 court, while Eric Samuelsson and Clayton Alenik dispatched Joel Popov and Arnaud Restifo in the No. 2 position by a 6-3 tally.
Stung, the Scarlet and Black quickly countered with a pair of wins to start singles play. Restifo made short work of Alberts in the second spot with a 6-1, 6-1 triumph, while Jan Kirchhoff registered his first dual-match victory as an Aztec after pinning a 6-1, 6-2 defeat on Sauer at No. 6 to put the visitors in front 2-1.
However, UNLV promptly stole the momentum after Cobzinov knocked off Cevallos at the top of the ladder, 6-3, 6-4, while Popov fell victim to Samuelsson in fourth slot, 6-1, 7-5.
The stage was now set for SDSU’s dramatic comeback, with Gonzalez Almazan outlasting Richard Solberg in the fifth position, 6-3, 4-6, 6-3, while Gjoels-Andersen overcame an early deficit against Lock at No. 3 before prevailing, 2-6, 6-3, 6-4.
San Diego State 4, UNLV 3
Order of finish: 3, 1, 2
Order of finish: 2, 6, 1, 4, 5, 3*